NASA SBIR 2011 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-1 X3.04-9372
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Spacecraft Cabin Ventilation and Thermal Control
PROPOSAL TITLE: Water Recovery for Regenerative Life Support Systems

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Creare, Inc.
P.O. Box 71
Hanover, NH 03755 - 3116
(603) 643-3800

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Michael G Izenson
P.O. Box 71
Hanover, NH 03755 - 3116
(603) 643-3800 Extension :2405

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 3
End: 4

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Thermal and environmental control systems for future exploration spacecraft must meet challenging requirements for efficient operation and conservation of resources. Regenerative CO2 removal systems are attractive for these missions because they do not use consumable CO2 absorbers. However, these systems also absorb water and vent it to space along with the carbon dioxide. This water loss can be prohibitively costly for long-duration missions. Conventional condensing heat exchangers for water conservation are not attractive, since they would add a significant load to a spacecraft's thermal control system. We propose to develop an innovative water recovery system that minimizes water lost from regenerative CO2 control systems without additional demands on the thermal control system. This approach addresses the need for water recovery systems in long-duration missions, reduces the need for consumables by enabling use of state-of-the-art regenerative CO2 removal systems, and minimizes demands on the spacecraft thermal control system. In Phase I we will prove the feasibility of our approach through proof-of-concept tests, trade-off studies, and prototype design. In Phase II we will build the prototype and measure its performance under conditions that simulate operation in a spacecraft life support system.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Creare's water recovery system will enable exploration spacecraft to undertake long-duration missions while conserving water, will not increase the size of the spacecraft thermal management system, and enables use of state-of-the-art, pressure-swing absorption systems for CO2 removal. Applications include crewed exploration vehicles and manned surface rovers. The unit is compact, typically weighs less than one day's worth of water loss, and adds negligible air pressure drop to the cabin ventilation circuit. Combined with Creare's nonventing radiator technology, a similar system could be used in future EVA suits to prevent water from being vented along with carbon dioxide.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Creare's water recovery system can be used in terrestrial fuel cell power systems, where water management is a critical balance of plant function. It will be particularly useful for vehicles powered by PEM fuel cells, where compact size and light weight are critical requirements.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.)
Active Systems
Essential Life Resources (Oxygen, Water, Nutrients)

Form Generated on 11-22-11 13:43