Microgravity Evaluation of Colorimetric-Solid Phase Extraction for the Measurement of Total I (Iodine, Iodide, and Triiodide) in Spacecraft Drinking Water
We are developing a drinking water test kit based on colorimetric-solid phase extraction (C-SPE) for use onboard the International Space Station (ISS) and on future Lunar and/or Mars missions. C-SPE involves measuring the change in diffuse reflectance of indicator disks following their exposure to a water sample. We previously demonstrated the effectiveness of C-SPE in measuring iodine in microgravity. This analytical method has now been extended to encompass the measurement of total I (i.e., iodine, iodide, and triiodide). This objective was accomplished by introducing an oxidizing agent to convert iodide and triiodide to iodine, which is then measured using the indicator disks previously developed for iodine. We report here the results of a recent series of C-9 microgravity tests of this method. The results demonstrate that C-SPE technology is poised to meet the total I monitoring requirements of the international space program.