Multi-Cell Thermal Battery

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX10RA18C
Agency Tracking Number: 074175
Amount: $599,990.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2010
Solicitation Year: 2007
Solicitation Topic Code: X5.01
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
11111 W. 8th Avenue, Unit A, Lakewood, CO, 80215-5516
DUNS: 120561456
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Douwe Bruinsma
 Principal Investigator
 (303) 468-6718
Business Contact
 Robert Zubrin
Title: Business Official
Phone: (303) 980-0890
Research Institution
The multi-cell thermal battery (MCTB) is a device that can recover a large fraction of the thermal energy from heated regolith and subsequently apply this energy to heat up cool regolith. The individual cells of the MCTB contain a thermal storage media that is specifically designed for optimal performance at a given temperature range. Each of these cells is charged with thermal energy from hot regolith that has been used in a lunar ISRU application. Once the MCTB is charged, the heat is transferred from the battery to newly harvested regolith. In this manner over 85% of the heat can be transferred from the expended to the new regolith. This is a large improvement especially considering that this reduces the heating requirement to produce 1000 kg of O2 from lunar regolith from an average of 1 kW to only 0.15 kW (assuming 3% O2 recovery by weight). The other irreducible power consumption of lunar ISRU O2 production is electrolysis which consumes at least 0.3 kW. Hence, using the MCTB decreases the irreducible power consumption of lunar ISRU by 65 %.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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