Development of a Robust, Highly Efficient Oxygen-Carbon Monoxide Cogeneration System

Award Information
Agency:
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$750,000.00
Award Year:
2012
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase II
Contract:
NNX12CA26C
Agency Tracking Number:
105118
Solicitation Year:
2010
Solicitation Topic Code:
X1.02
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
Materials and Systems Research, Inc.
5395 West 700 South, Salt Lake City, UT, 84104-4403
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
Y
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
858801483
Principal Investigator:
Greg Tao
Principal Investigator
(801) 530-4987
gtao@msrihome.com
Business Contact:
Anthony Decheek
Business Official
(801) 530-4987
adecheek@msrihome.com
Research Institution:
Stub




Abstract
This small business innovation research is intended to develop a long-life, highly efficient O2-CO cogeneration system to support NASA's endeavors to pursue extraterrestrial exploration (Moon, Mars, and Asteroids/Phobos). The cogeneration system will be built using a Tubular, Negative Electrode-supported Solid-Oxide Electrolysis Cell (Tune-SOEC) employing MSRI's most promising degradation-resistant ceramic materials and a unique cell design. The system will be capable of co-generating breathable oxygen and CO fuel directly from carbon dioxide extracted from the Martian atmosphere, lunar regolith/soil, or from the cabin air of extraterrestrial human missions at 800¿C. In Phase I, CO2 electrolysis degradation mechanisms were investigated via nonequilibrium thermodynamic analyses and tests of Tune-SOECs with special embedded reference electrodes. Unique solutions for long-term, high performance CO2 electrolysis will be developed and implemented. In Phase II, a prototype O2-CO cogeneration system using the Tune-SOEC technology will be developed. A proof-of-concept system will be demonstrated for cogenerating O2-CO directly from a CO2 source at pressures ranging from 1 atmosphere to 50 atmosphere at 800¿C; showing the capability of using ISRU to generate 1 kg oxygen daily (enough to support 1 human).

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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