Author Topic: MOXIE payload  (Read 9197 times)

Online savuporo

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MOXIE payload
« on: 10/19/2015 02:55 AM »
Because everyone likes ISRU

Quote
Elder scientists work to send humans to Mars
Gerald Voecks (left), Michael Hecht (second from left), and Jeff Hoffman (right) are working on technology to turn carbon dioxide into oxygen on Mars

“Look, I’m 80 years old — I might be dead before this project is over. Who knows!” said Donald Rapp, an energetic member of the team who has been retired from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory for more than a decade.
https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/02/08/elder-statesmen-science-unite-for-mars-mission/N5sZQqOEuhKC56rdtE4uPN/story.html

The Mars Oxygen  ISRU  Experiment (MOXIE) Michael H. Hecht,  Donald R. Rapp, and Jeffrey A. Hoffman
http://ssed.gsfc.nasa.gov/IPM/PDF/1134.pdf

Mars ISRU for Production of Mission Critical Consumables  – Options, Recent Studies, and Current State of the Art - Jerry Sanders
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/20150016009.pdf
http://planetaryprotection.nasa.gov/file_download/90/29-Sanders.Mars.ISRU.PP_Sanders.V2.pdf


To add, Rapp has written two books heavily focused on Mars and ISRU technologies.

http://www.amazon.com/Extraterrestrial-Resources-Missions-Astronautical-Engineering/dp/3642327613
http://www.amazon.com/Human-Missions-Mars-Technologies-Exploring/dp/3540729380

« Last Edit: 10/19/2015 03:02 AM by savuporo »
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Online Bob Shaw

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #1 on: 10/19/2015 11:12 AM »
What's not to like! Mars is TASTY!

Offline redliox

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #2 on: 10/23/2015 08:57 AM »
The Mars Oxygen  ISRU  Experiment (MOXIE) Michael H. Hecht,  Donald R. Rapp, and Jeffrey A. Hoffman
http://ssed.gsfc.nasa.gov/IPM/PDF/1134.pdf
Quote
In a human scale Mars
mission, the ISRU system would be operated continuously
in a steady state without interruption for many
months, adapting autonomously to atmospheric variability
(temperature, pressure, dust). Such a full-scale
system would produce roughly 25-30 metric tons of O2
during the ~17-month period between arrival of the
ISRU system and ascent vehicle on Mars, and the decision
to launch the human crew at the next launch opportunity.
This requires a production rate of approximately
2.2 kg/hr.
The SOXE architecture is a stack of cells, arranged
vertically like a multi-story building. The two MOXIE
stacks each utilize 11 cells. An assembly of 100 stacks,
each containing 20 MOXIE-sized cells, would produce
>2 kg/hr of O2 with an energy investment of ~12 kW.
A full-size CO2 acquisition system requires 8 kg/hr
of martian atmosphere, ~0.14 m3
/s at 7 mbar.

That gives some numbers to work with.  So, apparently, a full-scale cousin to MOXIE could produce about 1.5 metric tons of oxygen on Mars monthly.  At the least, it gives a very steadfast supply of breathable air.  My question would be how tricky is it to ensure 12 kW (hourly I presume) for oxygen ISRU?  I'll post this same question on the power thread too.
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Online guckyfan

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #3 on: 10/23/2015 09:56 AM »
It says 12kW not 12kWh. So it means a continuously available power of 12kW. If they calculate it 24h/day batteries and app. 3 times 12kW, so 36kW peak solar panel output would be needed. With losses probably up to 50kW.

Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #4 on: 10/12/2016 04:32 PM »
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Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #5 on: 10/13/2016 05:55 AM »
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Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #6 on: 10/15/2016 08:00 PM »
Lead investigator Dr. Michael Hecht gives an overview

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Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #7 on: 10/15/2016 08:46 PM »
Screengrabs from the more interesting slides, couldnt find the actual presentation posted yet.

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Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #8 on: 10/15/2016 08:47 PM »
Part 2
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Offline Robotbeat

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #9 on: 10/17/2016 02:21 AM »
Because everyone likes ISRU

Quote
Elder scientists work to send humans to Mars
Gerald Voecks (left), Michael Hecht (second from left), and Jeff Hoffman (right) are working on technology to turn carbon dioxide into oxygen on Mars

“Look, I’m 80 years old — I might be dead before this project is over. Who knows!” said Donald Rapp, an energetic member of the team who has been retired from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory for more than a decade.
https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/02/08/elder-statesmen-science-unite-for-mars-mission/N5sZQqOEuhKC56rdtE4uPN/story.html

The Mars Oxygen  ISRU  Experiment (MOXIE) Michael H. Hecht,  Donald R. Rapp, and Jeffrey A. Hoffman
http://ssed.gsfc.nasa.gov/IPM/PDF/1134.pdf

Mars ISRU for Production of Mission Critical Consumables  – Options, Recent Studies, and Current State of the Art - Jerry Sanders
http://ntrs.nasa.gov/archive/nasa/casi.ntrs.nasa.gov/20150016009.pdf
http://planetaryprotection.nasa.gov/file_download/90/29-Sanders.Mars.ISRU.PP_Sanders.V2.pdf


To add, Rapp has written two books heavily focused on Mars and ISRU technologies.

http://www.amazon.com/Extraterrestrial-Resources-Missions-Astronautical-Engineering/dp/3642327613
http://www.amazon.com/Human-Missions-Mars-Technologies-Exploring/dp/3540729380
That slide you showed IS really interesting... Particularly:
"Mars soil excavator or processor appears to be able to fit on the sample cache rover; power system will need to be supplemented"

If they're looking at soil excavator, that means water ISRU /near-term/. If you solve that, then you go straight to full ISRU. It solves a LOT of problems, means you can do a fully reusable shuttling lander/ascent vehicle, and takes care of the vast majority of the crew consumables. Having lots of water to work with would be an enormous blessing on Mars.

With water ISRU, you have fuel, oxidizer, oxygen for the crew, lots of water for the crew and for maintenance (now you can wash off the dusty spacesuits, wash clothes, clean filters, etc...), and feedstocks for simple plastic production (can make polyethylene and polypropylene from methane and some oxygen, given the right catalysts and reaction chambers).

Add nitrogen recovery (fairly easy compared to mining water), and now you can make up the buffer gas and even make ammonia, which would allow bulk food production when combined with oxygen and methane in vats with the right single-celled organisms... Plus a range of other chemicals.

So this is a very good step. CO/O2 rockets may be a hobby horse of mine, but I think we should go straight to water ISRU from the first crewed mission.
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Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #10 on: 10/17/2016 03:30 AM »
With water ISRU, you have fuel, oxidizer, oxygen for the crew, lots of water for the crew and for maintenance (now you can wash off the dusty spacesuits, wash clothes, clean filters, etc...), and feedstocks for simple plastic production (can make polyethylene and polypropylene from methane and some oxygen, given the right catalysts and reaction chambers).

Can i refer you to a very recent dissertation called Risk-value optimization of performance and cost for propellant production on Mars that factors in all the previous work, including NASA DRM 3 and DRA 5 studies, everything that Dr. Rapp has written and then some, and does actual modelling and design trades ? The conclusions are well worth a read.

And then, lets keep this thread on MOXIE or at least on CO2 solid oxide electrolysis ?
« Last Edit: 10/17/2016 03:30 AM by savuporo »
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Offline Robotbeat

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #11 on: 10/17/2016 03:41 AM »
With water ISRU, you have fuel, oxidizer, oxygen for the crew, lots of water for the crew and for maintenance (now you can wash off the dusty spacesuits, wash clothes, clean filters, etc...), and feedstocks for simple plastic production (can make polyethylene and polypropylene from methane and some oxygen, given the right catalysts and reaction chambers).

Can i refer you to a very recent dissertation called Risk-value optimization of performance and cost for propellant production on Mars that factors in all the previous work, including NASA DRM 3 and DRA 5 studies, everything that Dr. Rapp has written and then some, and does actual modelling and design trades ? The conclusions are well worth a read.

And then, lets keep this thread on MOXIE or at least on CO2 solid oxide electrolysis ?
I read the conclusions of the study. None are surprising, however the assumptions are that we're trying to do a Mars mission just to do a Mars mission, i.e. Apollo. If you're going to Mars to stay (which is what NASA is supposed to be shooting for long-term, according to our current president), you're going to have to develop water ISRU eventually. So do you design the architecture twice, first with oxygen-only (as currently baselined) and only LATER develop water-ISRU? That sounds like a waste.

As far as keeping the topic on solid-oxide, the slide you presented shows the very first serious analysis of flying a water ISRU experiment on a nearish-term mission. I am very interested in that.


But if you want to talk about solid oxide:
I've seen little analysis about actually using that carbon monoxide as fuel. It seems people either are unaware it's possible, or they're aware but only remember "it has low Isp," dismiss it out of hand as such (even though the Isp is actually over 300s if you use a decent engine, and in my analysis actually does better than basically anything else on an energy-vs-payload-to-LMO metric if you have good mass fraction), and aren't actually aware of a serious trade that incorporates carbon monoxide as a fuel.

If solid oxide and MOXIE tech has a real future in the long-term beyond a niche use maybe for ECLSS, then it requires building a capability to use carbon monoxide as a fuel.
« Last Edit: 10/17/2016 03:58 AM by Robotbeat »
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Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #12 on: 10/17/2016 03:59 AM »
I've seen little analysis about actually using that carbon monoxide as fuel. It seems people either are unaware it's possible, or they're aware but only remember "it has low Isp," dismiss it out of hand as such, and aren't actually aware of a serious trade that incorporates carbon dioxide as a fuel
Then i can only conclude you are not actually interested in the subject. Like i mentioned, CO based rockets have been discarded like 10-15 years ago. Easily the most referenced comprehensive study:

http://www.niac.usra.edu/files/studies/final_report/340Rice.pdf
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Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #13 on: 10/17/2016 04:03 AM »
If solid oxide and MOXIE tech has a real future in the long-term beyond a niche use maybe for ECLSS, then it requires building a capability to use carbon monoxide as a fuel.
No, it requires capability to liquefy the produced oxygen and burn it with something. Paraffin based hybrid is a candidate for MAV.
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Offline Robotbeat

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #14 on: 10/17/2016 04:06 AM »
I've seen little analysis about actually using that carbon monoxide as fuel. It seems people either are unaware it's possible, or they're aware but only remember "it has low Isp," dismiss it out of hand as such, and aren't actually aware of a serious trade that incorporates carbon dioxide as a fuel
Then i can only conclude you are not actually interested in the subject. Like i mentioned, CO based rockets have been discarded like 10-15 years ago.
Without good reason.
Quote
Easily the most referenced comprehensive study:

http://www.niac.usra.edu/files/studies/final_report/340Rice.pdf
Which seems to focus on hybrid rockets. Which SHOULD be discarded. Hybrids just aren't a good idea, especially if you're thinking of producing the solid grain in-situ! I mean solid carbon monoxide in a hybrid rocket? Crazy. Not a good idea. Even with fairly normal propellant grains made on Earth, you have chunks fly off and engines routinely blow up if large enough scale. Hybrids just aren't a good idea.

Also, the chamber pressures are low because they're using a hybrid rocket. You don't get the full potential from the fuel combination that way. A higher performance 10MPa chamber pressure liquid rocket engine would have no problem getting the Isp above 300s (without melting the engine), and would be far easier to fill up on another planet. (I simulated this in RPA, for what it's worth.)

Plus hybrids have inherently crappy mass fraction compared to good liquid pump-fed engines.
« Last Edit: 10/17/2016 04:09 AM by Robotbeat »
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Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #15 on: 10/17/2016 04:44 AM »
I've seen little analysis about actually using that carbon monoxide as fuel. It seems people either are unaware it's possible, or they're aware but only remember "it has low Isp," dismiss it out of hand as such, and aren't actually aware of a serious trade that incorporates carbon dioxide as a fuel
Then i can only conclude you are not actually interested in the subject. Like i mentioned, CO based rockets have been discarded like 10-15 years ago.
Without good reason.
No, because people at Lews Research Center built a subscale demonstrator, which required a good mix of unobtainium to construct and near immortal technicians on par with Valentin Glushko who survived fluorine, and despite their best efforts could not ignite it reliably, and only got mediocre performance out of it.
« Last Edit: 10/17/2016 04:44 AM by savuporo »
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Offline Robotbeat

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #16 on: 10/17/2016 05:20 AM »
I recently saw correspondence with the lead of that effort at Glenn Research Center (as it's now called), and she certainly thought it was still very promising. And the fact that a non-optimized low pressure version has difficulty igniting in one iteration doesn't mean it's inherently a bad propellant to use, I've had problems getting perfectly good propellant combinations to reliably ignite in some combinations. You're grasping at straws trying to find an authoritative rationale for CO's rejection.

It wasn't "abandoned" for any good reason. The same excuse pops up almost every time it's rejected: "low Isp."
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Online savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #17 on: 10/17/2016 05:43 AM »
I recently saw correspondence with the lead of that effort at Glenn Research Center (as it's now called), and she certainly thought it was still very promising. And the fact that a non-optimized low pressure version has difficulty igniting in one iteration doesn't mean it's inherently a bad propellant to use, I've had problems getting perfectly good propellant combinations to reliably ignite in some combinations. You're grasping at straws trying to find an authoritative rationale for CO's rejection.

It wasn't "abandoned" for any good reason. The same excuse pops up almost every time it's rejected: "low Isp."
It has been evaluated plenty of times, and every time the answer is : engineering complexity of building an actual working rocket engine that would reliably work in any conditions, is very high. That's just in lab on Earth, nevermind Mars. High combustion temperature combined with materials compatibility issues of high temperature CO make it simply unattractive option. Similar reasons why nobody is flying around LF2/LH2 SSTOs.
Handwaving.

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Offline Proponent

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #18 on: 10/17/2016 08:26 AM »
I recently saw correspondence with the lead of that effort at Glenn Research Center (as it's now called), and she certainly thought it was still very promising. And the fact that a non-optimized low pressure version has difficulty igniting in one iteration doesn't mean it's inherently a bad propellant to use, I've had problems getting perfectly good propellant combinations to reliably ignite in some combinations. You're grasping at straws trying to find an authoritative rationale for CO's rejection.

It wasn't "abandoned" for any good reason. The same excuse pops up almost every time it's rejected: "low Isp."
It has been evaluated plenty of times, and every time the answer is : engineering complexity of building an actual working rocket engine that would reliably work in any conditions, is very high. That's just in lab on Earth, nevermind Mars. High combustion temperature combined with materials compatibility issues of high temperature CO make it simply unattractive option. Similar reasons why nobody is flying around LF2/LH2 SSTOs.
Handwaving.



High combustion temperature?  Not according to these calculations (refer to the column labeled "Ctemp").

Attached are two older papers on oxygen-CO, the second of which maps out the conditions under which the combination ignites.  There are some tricks to ignition, but it does not seem an insurmountable problem.

Offline Proponent

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #19 on: 10/17/2016 11:22 AM »
By the way, CO is less toxic and more stable than the hydrazines (N2H4. MMH, or UDMH), and it's in the same flammability class as N2H4 and MMH.  It's hazardous, but I don't think it's mad-scientist hazardous.
« Last Edit: 10/17/2016 11:24 AM by Proponent »

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