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Advanced Exploration Systems Division

Life Support Systems: Wastewater Processing and Water Management

Active Technology Project

Project Introduction

Advanced Exploration Systems (AES) Life Support Systems project Wastewater Processing and Water Management task: Within an integrated life support system, water recovery systems provide water for use by various environmental control and life support functions on board the spacecraft. These functions may include drinking water, food re-hydration, water for crew hygiene, flush water for the spacecraft urinal, source water for oxygen generation, and, depending on the complexity of the life support system, water for crew shower and laundry. The wastewater streams that return from these uses and require treatment to be returned back to a potable state can include stabilized urine and flush water, humidity condensate, shower and laundry grey water, and water from carbon dioxide and wet-trash processing systems. The purpose of the water recovery system is to close the water loop by removing the contaminants associated with the various wastewater streams and then returning the balance of clean water back to the potable water bus in a stabilized form suitable for storage and reuse. This project is investigating the use of silver biocide to control water quality.  This project is also developing a technology to use a biological reactor to process wastewater.

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