Results from the Vehicle Cabin Atmosphere Monitor: A Miniature Gas Chromatograph/Mass Spectrometer for Trace Contamination Monitoring on the ISS and Orion
Progress on the delivery of the Vehicle Cabin Atmosphere Monitor (VCAM) is reported. VCAM is an autonomous trace-species detector to be used aboard the International Space Station (ISS) for atmospheric analysis. The instrument is based on a low-mass, low-power miniature preconcentrator, gas chromatograph, and Paul ion trap mass spectrometer (PCGC/MS) capable of measuring volatile constituents in a space vehicle or planetary outpost at sub-ppm levels. VCAM detects and quantifies 40 target compounds at their 180-day Spacecraft Maximum Allowable Concentration (SMAC) levels. It is designed to operate autonomously, maintenance-free, with a self-contained carrier and calibration gas supplies sufficient for a one-year lifetime. Two flight units will be delivered for operation in the ISS EXPRESS rack.