NASA is evaluating Dutyion™, a phase change permeation membrane technology developed by Design Technology and Irrigation (DTI), for use in future advanced life support systems. The phase change membranes could be used to passively and selectively mobilize water in microgravity to recover more water from urine and brine for environmental control and life support systems (ECLSS). A system using such technology might also be able to deliver water to plants in low gravity.
This project will explore a recent advancement in Phase Change Permeation™ technology to enable improved (1) water recovery from urine/brine for Environmental Control and Life Support Systems, and (2) water delivery to plants for potential use in microgravity. The innovation is the use of a phase change permeation membrane to passively and selectively mobilize water in microgravity. Test objectives for water purification will determine the effects of temperature and waste water chemical composition on the water flux rate across the membrane and the chemical and microbiological water quality of permeate and effluent streams. Test objectives for water delivery to plants will determine the soil wetting characteristics of the Dutyion™ membrane material in normal gravity in preparation for future proposed flight testing.More »
This membrane may enable recovery of water from wastewater or brines generated by physical chemical water recovery systems, or enable polishing of water from biological water recovery systems increasing ECLSS efficiency. The passive nature of the “pervaporation” process would allow operation in a u-gravity environment. For root hydration in reduced gravity environments, Phase Change Permeation™ technology could reduce plant stress by allowing passive transfer of water vapor to the root zone of the plants. Water stress is a limiting factor for many terrestrial agricultural systems, and must also be controlled in plant growth systems deployed in microgravity.More »
|Organizations Performing Work||Role||Type||Location|
|Kennedy Space Center (KSC)||Lead Organization||NASA Center||Kennedy Space Center, Florida|
|Design Technology & Irrigation, Ltd. (DTI)||Supporting Organization||Industry|
|Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC)||Supporting Organization||NASA Center||Huntsville, Alabama|
|QinetiQ North America/ESC||Supporting Organization||Industry|