Author Topic: MOXIE payload  (Read 10777 times)

Offline 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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Offline 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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Offline 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.

Offline savuporo

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

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

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

Offline savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #20 on: 10/17/2016 06:19 PM »
High combustion temperature?  Not according to these calculations (refer to the column labeled "Ctemp").

Attached is what i got. Methane burns hotter at stoichiometric mixture, but thats not the only difficulty. Can we maybe move this off to another CO rocketry thread ?
« Last Edit: 10/17/2016 06:19 PM by savuporo »
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Offline IainMcClatchie

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #21 on: 10/17/2016 08:01 PM »
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.

This paper was a good read.  Thank you.

The small bit of modelling I've done on a Mars return mission settled on essentially a three-stage return, using only a single vehicle type.  Two sit in orbit as propellant depots and one cycles from surface to orbit to fill them.  The return trip drains nearly all the propellant from one and then uses the other as a boost stage from orbit.

On-orbit propellant transfer makes it possible for a pair of vehicles to act almost like a staged vehicle... but you don't have to design, build or move the lower stage.  There is a huge amount of leverage in this scheme.

One consequence is that a three-stage return is a lot less sensitive to the Isp of the propellants than a one stage (ITS) or two stage (DRA and your referenced dissertation) return.  Maybe that's why CO-O2 propellant looks pretty decent.  With my propellant plant efficiency assumptions, methalox still beats it, but not by huge margins.  Maybe next weekend I'll incorporate the better plant efficiency assumptions from this thesis to see if there is any change.

Offline savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #22 on: 04/01/2017 08:05 PM »
http://www.hou.usra.edu/meetings/lpsc2017/eposter/2410.pdf

Quote
One of the risks to MOXIE is the dust in the Martian atmosphere. To protect MOXIE
from dust, a High Efficiency Particulate Arrestance (HEPA) filter is fitted at the inlet
(Fig. 2). However, as the filter accumulates dust, the pressure drop across the filter
will increase. If the pressure drop becomes large enough, there is a risk that the CO2
compressor (a scroll pump) will not be able to deliver the required 1 atm outlet
pressure for electrolysis [2]

Although HEPA filters have been widely studied on Earth (e.g. [3]), their performance
under Martian conditions is less well known. We investigated the effect of dust
loading, filtration velocity, and ambient pressure on the filter’s pressure drop.

Quote
CONCLUSION

Suspended dust at typical background levels is unlikely to produce a problematic
filter pressure drop during the operational lifetime of MOXIE (30 hours), with margin
to 300 hours. However, 30 hours is a small fraction of the total mission, during which
the filter will be continuously exposed to the environment. Therefore, long-duration
testing is needed to study dust ingestion from landing, winds, dust devils and storms.
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Offline Rei

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #23 on: 04/03/2017 07:55 AM »
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.

Indeed. Not high temperature, just lousy performance and even more cryogenic than methalox. I think they were confusing CO with (CN)2. Which is pretty good performance (and non-cryogenic), but blazing hot (unless you burn it with MON rather than LOX, and/or burn it with some hydrogen-bearing material (e.g. ~5% H2, 15% CH4, etc)).

Re, LOX/CO - also, in addition to ignition challenges, it has issues with incomplete combustion because its burn is so slow.  But that can be overcome with high pressure engines. Overall, it would probably be superb for "hopper" rockets on Mars if storage doesn't prove too challenging. Possibly an ascent stage to LMO, but it'd have a poor payload fraction. I don't think it'd be particularly good for anything more than that, due to the low ISP.

I'm not always onboard with Zubrin, but I have to agree that it makes more sense if you're doing round trips to Mars just to bring hydrogen for propellant production to get a higher propellant ISP until you're able to produce it in-situ.
« Last Edit: 04/03/2017 08:00 AM by Rei »

Offline guckyfan

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #24 on: 04/03/2017 07:59 AM »
I think even Zubrin has abandoned the idea of bringing H2. It was used because at the time they did not know there is so much water on Mars.

Offline Rei

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #25 on: 04/03/2017 08:01 AM »
I think even Zubrin has abandoned the idea of bringing H2. It was used because at the time they did not know there is so much water on Mars.

Really? Has he written something about giving up the idea? Yes, there's a lot of water on Mars, but the TRL is 2-3. MOXIE will push the TRL on SOFCs for CO/O2 production to 8.
« Last Edit: 04/03/2017 08:02 AM by Rei »

Offline guckyfan

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #26 on: 04/03/2017 01:42 PM »
TRL is really not applicable here. When we send pepople water from Mars will be used. So the required technology will have to be developed. It is not rocket science.

Offline Rei

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #27 on: 04/03/2017 04:21 PM »
TRL is really not applicable here. When we send pepople water from Mars will be used. So the required technology will have to be developed. It is not rocket science.

Actually, ISRU production of propellant is very much is rocket science.

And TRL is everything when it comes to real-world space missions. I know it's fun to pretend that everything is just about launch costs and willpower, but in practice engineering, validation, and operations/analysis are the big ones.  Random example - Cassini. $3,27B. Launch vehicle: $422M. 13% of the cost of the mission. Of NASA's $2,6B, $1,442B (55%) was spent on pre-launch development (a majority of the rest on operations). And nowadays the fraction spent on launch could be far less (e.g. FH rather than Titan IVB)

Aerospace systems development is expensive.
« Last Edit: 04/03/2017 04:22 PM by Rei »

Offline guckyfan

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #28 on: 04/03/2017 05:57 PM »
Are you trying to draw parallels between Cassini and a mining robot that digs through regolith?

Edit: A mining robot designed and built by SpaceX.
« Last Edit: 04/03/2017 06:06 PM by guckyfan »

Offline Rei

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #29 on: 04/03/2017 09:33 PM »
Are you trying to draw parallels between Cassini and a mining robot that digs through regolith?

On a percentage basis, yes (not an absolute dollar basis). Launch costs are rarely the majority of a robotic mission, and generally a rather small fraction of it. An ever-decreasing fraction.

Quote
Edit: A mining robot designed and built by SpaceX.

Yes, because if there's anything SpaceX has experience with, it's mining and robots?


« Last Edit: 04/03/2017 09:33 PM by Rei »

Offline Dalhousie

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #30 on: 04/03/2017 10:14 PM »

Edit: A mining robot designed and built by SpaceX.

Link please!  A quick Google reveals only the usual arm waving and hot air.
« Last Edit: 04/03/2017 10:33 PM by Dalhousie »
"There is nobody who is a bigger fan of sending robots to Mars than me... But I believe firmly that the best, the most comprehensive, the most successful exploration will be done by humans" Steve Squyres

Offline guckyfan

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #31 on: 04/04/2017 06:43 AM »

Edit: A mining robot designed and built by SpaceX.

Link please!  A quick Google reveals only the usual arm waving and hot air.

Try formulating it less rude and I will consider an answer.

Offline Rei

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #32 on: 04/04/2017 08:13 AM »

Edit: A mining robot designed and built by SpaceX.

Link please!  A quick Google reveals only the usual arm waving and hot air.

Try formulating it less rude and I will consider an answer.

Or you could try just answering their very simple request; either way.

Offline guckyfan

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #33 on: 04/04/2017 09:57 AM »
Or you could try just answering their very simple request; either way.

Since it is you asking, I will.

Mission statements  on Red Mars in the IAC presentation.

Mission Objectives
........
Identify and characterize potential resources such as water.
........
Demonstrate key surface capabilities on Mars.

That quite clearly indicates capability to get to water and find out what is mixed into it. Not a stretch from there to a small digging robot. Certainly much less of a stretch than the comparison of Cassini to a basic mining robot.

As to the experience of SpaceX. They did the Roomba, they can do a lot of things if they set their mind to it.





Offline Dalhousie

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #34 on: 04/04/2017 11:01 AM »
Or you could try just answering their very simple request; either way.

Since it is you asking, I will.

Mission statements  on Red Mars in the IAC presentation.

Mission Objectives
........
Identify and characterize potential resources such as water.
........
Demonstrate key surface capabilities on Mars.

That quite clearly indicates capability to get to water and find out what is mixed into it. Not a stretch from there to a small digging robot. Certainly much less of a stretch than the comparison of Cassini to a basic mining robot.

As to the experience of SpaceX. They did the Roomba, they can do a lot of things if they set their mind to it.

In other words. no evidence, just speculation and extrapolation.  This is what I thought.
"There is nobody who is a bigger fan of sending robots to Mars than me... But I believe firmly that the best, the most comprehensive, the most successful exploration will be done by humans" Steve Squyres

Offline Rei

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #35 on: 04/04/2017 11:40 AM »
Mining is a very difficult activity on Earth (particularly hard rock mining, aka if you're dealing with permafrost (ice + regolith). Even on Earth, mining and ore processing equipment are very prone to wear and breakdowns.  This in environments we have well quantified. What we don't have quantified well is Martian permafrost. What dissolved compounds are in it and in what ratios? How much particulate / debris, and in what size ratios, and how does that vary as you progress through a play with respect to depth and location? How does the play thickness vary? How does sublimation affect things as you work through a play? We know very, very little about what we'd be mining through.  Just making a little rock abrasion tool or sampler arm for loose material is challenging enough. And when you're talking about enough ice to make propellant for whole fleets of ITS-sized vehicles, you're talking about large scale mining. Meaning equipment with heavy parts that are hard to replace, and where if you mess up you can knock down a wall or bend important pieces of equipment. Equipment that can kill people.

Right now, the TRL for ice mining on Mars is 2-3, according to NASA analyses of the different approaches.  There's lots of different approaches proposed. None are remotely mature.

And if the best thing you have to show that SpaceX has this under wraps is some document saying that they plan to do it, and the fact that they built a "roomba" that will probably move a couple hundred meters in its lifetime across a uniform flat steel deck with guidance sensors all around it in temperate conditions and humans present to maintain it at will in a shirtsleeves environment with every resource known to man available to them... well, that's enough said about the topic.
« Last Edit: 04/04/2017 03:50 PM by Rei »

Offline guckyfan

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #36 on: 04/04/2017 12:28 PM »
So I show a document by SpaceX that says they are planning to do it and you just brush it aside as speculation?


Offline Rei

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #37 on: 04/04/2017 03:49 PM »
So I show a document by SpaceX that says they are planning to do it and you just brush it aside as speculation?

You're confusing "planning to do it" with "the technology is mature and / or trivial to mature"

Offline guckyfan

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #38 on: 04/04/2017 04:08 PM »
So I show a document by SpaceX that says they are planning to do it and you just brush it aside as speculation?

You're confusing "planning to do it" with "the technology is mature and / or trivial to mature"

This is moving beyond ridiculous now. Nobody has landed a mining robot on Mars yet. We all know this. I was talking about plans, I provided the proof for those plans existing. Get over it.

Offline Rei

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #39 on: 04/04/2017 07:16 PM »
So I show a document by SpaceX that says they are planning to do it and you just brush it aside as speculation?

You're confusing "planning to do it" with "the technology is mature and / or trivial to mature"

This is moving beyond ridiculous now. Nobody has landed a mining robot on Mars yet. We all know this. I was talking about plans, I provided the proof for those plans existing. Get over it.

First off, please, no belligerence. There's no need for statements like "get over it" or refusing to answer questions from other people. We're all friends here, even if we have disagreements. Right?

Secondly, the statement that both Dalhousie and myself are contesting from you is " So the required technology will have to be developed. It is not rocket science."

It is rocket science. It is not trivial like you make it out to be. Nobody is contesting what SpaceX's plans are. You brought that up on your own and nobody but you has talked about it.
« Last Edit: 04/04/2017 07:18 PM by Rei »

Offline guckyfan

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #40 on: 04/04/2017 08:00 PM »

Secondly, the statement that both Dalhousie and myself are contesting from you is " So the required technology will have to be developed. It is not rocket science."

It is rocket science. It is not trivial like you make it out to be. Nobody is contesting what SpaceX's plans are. You brought that up on your own and nobody but you has talked about it.

I stated no more than the plans by SpaceX. Are you seriously contesting my statement "It is not rocket science" as our main difference?

So once again and for the last time building a limited mining robot is not rocket science. You keep throwing wrong accusations on me and I am not going to continue this useless conversation beyond this.

Online Robotbeat

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #41 on: 04/06/2017 03:16 AM »
People keep saying CO/O2 sucks due to the crappy Isp, but the flip side of low Isp is that it takes much less energy to produce, especially considering it doesn't need to throw away so much energy with methane, Sabatier process and isn't deeply cryogenic like hydrogen. And requires no water. With a little effort, you could make a SSTO Mars RLV with it. LMO.
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Offline john smith 19

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #42 on: 04/07/2017 09:07 AM »
Mining is a very difficult activity on Earth (particularly hard rock mining, aka if you're dealing with permafrost (ice + regolith). Even on Earth, mining and ore processing equipment are very prone to wear and breakdowns.  This in environments we have well quantified. What we don't have quantified well is Martian permafrost. What dissolved compounds are in it and in what ratios? How much particulate / debris, and in what size ratios, and how does that vary as you progress through a play with respect to depth and location? How does the play thickness vary? How does sublimation affect things as you work through a play? We know very, very little about what we'd be mining through.  Just making a little rock abrasion tool or sampler arm for loose material is challenging enough. And when you're talking about enough ice to make propellant for whole fleets of ITS-sized vehicles, you're talking about large scale mining. Meaning equipment with heavy parts that are hard to replace, and where if you mess up you can knock down a wall or bend important pieces of equipment. Equipment that can kill people.

Right now, the TRL for ice mining on Mars is 2-3, according to NASA analyses of the different approaches.  There's lots of different approaches proposed. None are remotely mature.
True.  Samplers have collected Martian soil since the days of Viking but IIRC the estimate is any ISRU may have to drill up to 30m to get to the water layer. While this could be fairly straightforward the problems start if anything goes wrong. On Earth commercial drilling is a fairly closely monitored process with plenty of spares on hand in case the drill bit hits trouble and humans to change them.

Then there is the doubt about what's in that water layer. Pure liquid water (implausible) to ice to very muddy ice to some ice with lots of large boulders in that will jam up any collection pipe under a metre across (or more).

BTW there is the other option of using CO2 and the trace amounts of Nitrogen to make Cyanogen. This sidesteps the whole water extraction process at the risk of even hotter combustion (it has been used in welding torches and re-entry simulation but is seriously toxic).

REL mentioned it in their Project Troy Mars project.

Attached is what i got. Methane burns hotter at stoichiometric mixture, but thats not the only difficulty. Can we maybe move this off to another CO rocketry thread ?
Except, as I'm sure you're aware, no one runs rocket engines at stoichiometric because it's actually sub optimal for Isp

People run chambers fuel rich to avoid excess oxidizer reacting with the chamber walls. This seems to be the basis of the prejudice against using LOX as a chamber coolant, despite oxidizer wall cooling being SOP for NTO and HTP engines.

The yardstick should not be absolute performance. It should be is the performance adequate to get the job done? 

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.
Thanks for that.

CO is actually quite a common industrial fuel, however as it's normally mfg in situ (IIRC mostly by the Sabatier process) you don't see tanker loads of liquefied CO being driven around the country.

It's dangerous in the way that any odourless, colourless and toxic gas is but not IIRC at the WMD levels of  the hydrazines and a respirator is quite adequate as long as the its concentration is not too high, plus CO detection is well developed and will usually give you time to evacuate (unlike the hydrazines, where if you can smell fish the chances are your lungs have already started to rupture).

CO is probably a lot more common industrial fuel than people realize (it's the ultimate oxidizer in steel making) but it's not noticed because it doesn't cause trouble and that's because the technology and procedures to handle it (in an industrial environment) are well developed.
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Offline john smith 19

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #43 on: 04/07/2017 09:29 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
This is a NAIC study, which by it's nature tend to consider radical concepts. In this case trading the simplicity of mfg of a CO ice/LOX rocket engine (low chamber pressure, close to ambient Mars temperatures) versus it's pretty poor performance. The upside is no one has to design a CO pump and work out how to power it.

All reports have biases. The more honest ones will set them out up front.
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline Rei

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #44 on: 04/07/2017 09:50 AM »
CO is probably a lot more common industrial fuel than people realize (it's the ultimate oxidizer in steel making) but it's not noticed because it doesn't cause trouble and that's because the technology and procedures to handle it (in an industrial environment) are well developed.

CO is really neat stuff in general, not just a waste product.  It's quite stable at ambient temperatures and pressures, but at elevated temperatures and pressures becomes unstable, even to the point of decomposing to carbon and CO2. Which makes it a natural precursor to the generation of hydrocarbons, since the carbon generated would rather join to almost anything else (hence CO + H2 forming syngas for the production of synfuels). If you want a petrochemical industry on Mars, you want CO.

Offline Dalhousie

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #45 on: 04/07/2017 10:23 AM »
CO is probably a lot more common industrial fuel than people realize (it's the ultimate oxidizer in steel making) but it's not noticed because it doesn't cause trouble and that's because the technology and procedures to handle it (in an industrial environment) are well developed.

CO is really neat stuff in general, not just a waste product.  It's quite stable at ambient temperatures and pressures, but at elevated temperatures and pressures becomes unstable, even to the point of decomposing to carbon and CO2. Which makes it a natural precursor to the generation of hydrocarbons, since the carbon generated would rather join to almost anything else (hence CO + H2 forming syngas for the production of synfuels). If you want a petrochemical industry on Mars, you want CO.


CO can also be used in a fuel cell and internal combustion engines, both turbines and diesels.
"There is nobody who is a bigger fan of sending robots to Mars than me... But I believe firmly that the best, the most comprehensive, the most successful exploration will be done by humans" Steve Squyres

Offline john smith 19

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #46 on: 04/07/2017 07:59 PM »
CO is really neat stuff in general, not just a waste product.  It's quite stable at ambient temperatures and pressures, but at elevated temperatures and pressures becomes unstable, even to the point of decomposing to carbon and CO2. Which makes it a natural precursor to the generation of hydrocarbons, since the carbon generated would rather join to almost anything else (hence CO + H2 forming syngas for the production of synfuels). If you want a petrochemical industry on Mars, you want CO.
For a lot of people Carbon Monoxide is just what badly adjusted heating furnaces put out but in industrial environments its a very useful chemical intermediate.

You're probably right about needing it for petrochems on Mars. The trouble is that they are used to coal and oil as mass Carbon sources.

CO can also be used in a fuel cell and internal combustion engines, both turbines and diesels.
True. In fact the MOXIE cell is effectively a fuel cell in reverse.
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline savuporo

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« Last Edit: 06/20/2017 08:40 AM by savuporo »
Orion - the first and only manned not-too-deep-space craft

Offline jongoff

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #48 on: 06/21/2017 03:52 AM »
As a fun little side note, Altius got to do the vacuum bakeout on some of the MOXIE hardware a few weeks ago. The company building the motors for the scroll compressors is the same company we selected to do the actuators for the RCS thruster gimbal we're doing for ULA, and they didn't yet have the facilities to do vacuum bakeout in-house, so they paid us to do that for them. Kind of cool to say we had Mars hardware in our facility.

~Jon

Offline savuporo

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #49 on: 08/16/2017 06:25 AM »
The papers linked above have been presented.

http://www.ice2017.net/conference/presentations#thursday

Orion - the first and only manned not-too-deep-space craft

Offline john smith 19

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #50 on: 08/16/2017 07:13 AM »
The papers linked above have been presented.

http://www.ice2017.net/conference/presentations#thursday
Excellent news. It looks like they will be ready well in time for Mars, but just as importantly they've got the processes in place to deal with NASA requirements.

That said this is 1/200 of full scale and AFAIK chemical plants usually go through a "pilot" phase between what is more or less a lab scale system and the final "production" system.
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline john smith 19

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #51 on: 08/16/2017 07:15 AM »
As a fun little side note, Altius got to do the vacuum bakeout on some of the MOXIE hardware a few weeks ago. The company building the motors for the scroll compressors is the same company we selected to do the actuators for the RCS thruster gimbal we're doing for ULA, and they didn't yet have the facilities to do vacuum bakeout in-house, so they paid us to do that for them. Kind of cool to say we had Mars hardware in our facility.

~Jon
A nice demonstration of how companies clustering together around a share resource form an ecosystem.   :)
Perhaps the first of many collaborations?
 
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

Offline Jim

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #52 on: 08/16/2017 11:46 AM »
As a fun little side note, Altius got to do the vacuum bakeout on some of the MOXIE hardware a few weeks ago. The company building the motors for the scroll compressors is the same company we selected to do the actuators for the RCS thruster gimbal we're doing for ULA, and they didn't yet have the facilities to do vacuum bakeout in-house, so they paid us to do that for them. Kind of cool to say we had Mars hardware in our facility.

~Jon
A nice demonstration of how companies clustering together around a share resource form an ecosystem.   :)
Perhaps the first of many collaborations?

Nothing new.  Ball sends their spacecraft to Lockheed Martin for environmental testing.  The same thing happens in SoCal.  And there is also the bay area collaboration
« Last Edit: 08/16/2017 11:47 AM by Jim »

Offline jongoff

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #53 on: 08/16/2017 02:15 PM »
As a fun little side note, Altius got to do the vacuum bakeout on some of the MOXIE hardware a few weeks ago. The company building the motors for the scroll compressors is the same company we selected to do the actuators for the RCS thruster gimbal we're doing for ULA, and they didn't yet have the facilities to do vacuum bakeout in-house, so they paid us to do that for them. Kind of cool to say we had Mars hardware in our facility.

~Jon
A nice demonstration of how companies clustering together around a share resource form an ecosystem.   :)
Perhaps the first of many collaborations?

Nothing new.  Ball sends their spacecraft to Lockheed Martin for environmental testing.  The same thing happens in SoCal.  And there is also the bay area collaboration

Yeah, being part of one of the established aerospace ecosystems helps a lot.

~Jon

Offline john smith 19

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Re: MOXIE payload
« Reply #54 on: 08/17/2017 09:22 AM »
Nothing new.  Ball sends their spacecraft to Lockheed Martin for environmental testing.  The same thing happens in SoCal.  And there is also the bay area collaboration
I didn't doubt it, but it's nice to know those facilities exist in Colorado as well and hardware doesn't have to get shipped to SoCal until it's fully ready to go.

It's hidden costs like this that can bump up the costs without people realizing what it will do to a budget.  :(
"Solids are a branch of fireworks, not rocketry. :-) :-) ", Henry Spencer 1/28/11  Averse to bold? You must be in marketing."It's all in the sequencing" K. Mattingly.  STS-Keeping most of the stakeholders happy most of the time.

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