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NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts

Solid State Air Purification System

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

The solid state air purification project will explore feasibility of a new air purification system based on a liquid membrane, capable of purifying carbon dioxide from air in a far more compact and energy efficient system than what is currently possible.

The purpose of this proposed research is to develop a new air purification system based on a liquid membrane, capable of purifying carbon dioxide from air in a far more compact and energy efficient system than what is currently possible. The approach relies on recent advances in supported liquid membranes, which allow us to make mechanically stable, ultra-thin supported liquids that have permeability and selectivity for carbon dioxide over one order of magnitude greater than existing approaches. Most critically, because these membranes use a liquid as an active material, it is possible to electrochemically pump the carbon dioxide, making it viable to build an air purification system that uses no mechanical components such as compressors. Such an innovation will dramatically improve NASA's capabilities to sustain manned spacecraft, including missions to Mars or other long-term space habitation.

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