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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

Non Thermal Plasma Assisted Catalytic Reactor for CO2 Methanation

Completed Technology Project

Project Description

Non Thermal Plasma Assisted Catalytic Reactor for CO2 Methanation
In situ production of methane as propellant and oxygen as life support consumables from the atmospheric CO2 and water on Mars is a key enabling technology required for sustainable and affordable human exploration of Mars. Sabatier reaction for catalytic methanation of CO2 with H2 is a commercially well known process achieving conversions in excess of 99% at temperature of ~350?C. However, application of this technology for Mars missions requires significant improvements in terms of mass and durability of the Sabatier reactor. Conventional catalytic approaches are insufficient to address the catalyst durability issues and its tolerance to impurities such as H2S and halogenated compounds, which may be present in small quantities in Martian CO2. Lynntech proposes a novel low power, low temperature, impurity tolerant non thermal plasma assisted catalysis for the methanation of CO2. Lynntech will develop a multi-channel reactor design based on parametric study in Phase I. The Phase II of the project will build a full scale Sabatier reactor for NASA application. More »

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