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Heat Pipe Solar Receiver for Oxygen Production of Lunar Regolith

Award Information

National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2009 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Advanced Cooling Technologies
1046 New Holland Ave. Lancaster, PA 17601-5606
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 2009
Title: Heat Pipe Solar Receiver for Oxygen Production of Lunar Regolith
Agency: NASA
Contract: NNX09CA48C
Award Amount: $599,896.00


Researchers have determined that lunar soil contains approximately 43% oxygen in the lunar soil oxides, which could be extracted to provide breathable oxygen for consumption by astronauts. The proposed program will develop a solar receiver for the hydrogen reduction process that uses sodium heat pipes in the 1050oC temperature range. The heat pipe solar receiver is accepts the non-uniform solar thermal energy, and deliver the energy to the lunar regolith with a uniform heat flux and temperature. This increases throughput and efficiency. The principal Phase II program objective is to design, fabricate, and demonstrate a heat pipe solar receiver in a relevant environment and near optimum configuration. While the Phase I program focused on a single heat pipe solar receiver and regolith reactor, the Phase II program will examine variable-conductance or pressure-controlled heat pipes to supply the heat supplied from a single receiver to multiple reactors. The program will examine control schemes to vary the heat supplied to each reactor, hydrogen permeation, and evaluation of the heat pipe wall materials.

Principal Investigator:

John Hartenstine
Principal Investigator

Business Contact:

Jon Zuo
Small Business Information at Submission:

Advanced Cooling Technologies, Inc.
1046 New Holland Avenue Lancaster, PA 17601

EIN/Tax ID: 571146896
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No