Human factor investigation of waste processing system during the Hi-SEAS 4-month Mars analog mission in support of NASA’s logistic reduction and repurposing project: Trash to gas.
NASA’s Logistics Reduction and Repurposing (LRR) project is a collaborative effort in which NASA is tasked with reducing total logistical mass through reduction, reuse and recycling of various wastes and components of long duration space missions and habitats. Trash to Gas (TtG) is a sub task to LRR with efforts focused on development of a technology that converts wastes generated during long duration space missions into high-value products such as methane, water for life support, raw material production feedstocks, and other energy sources. The reuse of discarded materials is a critical component to reducing overall mission mass. The 120 day Hawaii Space Exploration and Analog Simulation provides a unique opportunity to answer questions regarding crew interface and system analysis for designing and developing future flight-like versions of a TtG system. This paper will discuss the human factors that would affect the design of a TtG or other waste processing systems. An overview of the habitat, utility usage, and waste storage and generation is given. Crew time spent preparing trash for TtG processing was recorded. Gas concentrations were measured near the waste storage locations and at other locations in the habitat. In parallel with the analog mission, experimental processing of waste materials in a TtG reactor was performed in order to evaluate performance with realistic waste materials. Copyright © 2014 by the International Astronautical Federation. All rights reserved.
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