The technology offers a potential breakthrough that can also be integrated with process intensification techniques. Targeted non-NASA applications for a Microlith chemicals reactor include methanation reactors to be used in conjunction with solid oxide or molten carbonate fuel cells for power production, improved Haber process operations for producing ammonia for fertilizer or ammunition, and the general case of selectivity-sensitive chemicals manufacturing where temperature control and the unique Microlith geometry may offer advantages (including production of formaldehyde and methanol, and biogas conversion). Some of these processes currently require very large capital investments in large plants, allowing potential for a small, effective and selective reactor to find targeted applications of value.
CO2 Reduction System/Methanation: Precision Combustion's Sabatier reactor will create oxygen in cabin closed-loop atmosphere revitalization systems (ARS) and Lunar/Martian ISRU concepts that are key for sustained space missions. The technology will provide an ultra-compact, high efficiency catalytic CO2 methanation reactor for converting cabin air or lunar/Mars-sourced CO2 with H2 to methane and water vapor, the latter for use with an electrolyzer to generate O2 for spacecraft cabin ARS and mobile EVA applications. The methane can be used as fuel, e.g. for surface operations or return thrust, or for other chemicals manufacture in advanced ISRU applications. Technology variants of the Microlith reactor may emerge for other ISRU manufacturing. The technology's minimized size and maximized efficiency and durability will significantly reduce launch weight for long missions, and offers high value added for NASA