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Collection of Shuttle Humidity Condensate for Analytical Evaluation (DSO 317)
Principal Investigators
Research Area:
Environmental monitoring
Species Studied
Scientific Name: Species: N/A

The objectives of this study were to characterize and analyze the content of the Shuttle's humidity condensate to assess the contaminant-removal efficiency of the cabin heat exchanger; and to support development and realisitic testing of the water recycling and monitoring systems for the International Space Station.

The desire to remain in space for extended orbital missions and to inhabit the Moon has led to the development of advanced technologies for managing and treating wastewaters generated in space. These wastewaters must be recycled to meet the need for potable and hygiene water during flight. Although techniques for treating wastewater produced in a terrestrial setting are well established, neither techniques nor standards are available for recycling wastewater to produce drinking water.

The first proposed use of water recycling to support a U.S. space mission was on the International Space Station (ISS). Plans called for distilled urine, spent hygiene water, and humidity condensate to be recovered and recycled by a potable water processor. Organic and inorganic constituents were removed through a series of integrated granular activated carbon and ion-exchange beds. Low molecular-weight polar organics were oxidized by a catalytic oxidation unit. The finished water was disinfected by iodinated anion exchange resins.

Information from ground-based tests and Spacelab condensate studies were supplemented with the flight of Detailed Supplementary Objective (DSO) 317 on Space Shuttle missions STS-45 and STS-47. This DSO enabled the first in-flight collection of Shuttle cabin condensate for postflight analysis.

The specific objectives of the DSO were: (1) to collect representative samples of space-generated humidity condensate to support the development of water reclamation and monitoring hardware for the ISS and (2) to characterize the inorganic and organic constituents of these samples to expand the database generated by ground-based studies.

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Data Information
Data Availability
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Acetic acid
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Mission/Study Information
Mission Launch/Start Date Landing/End Date Duration
STS-45 03/24/1992 04/02/1992 9 days
STS-47 09/12/1992 09/19/1992 7 days

Additional Information
Managing NASA Center
Johnson Space Center (JSC)
Responsible NASA Representative
Johnson Space Center LSDA Office
Project Manager: Pamela A. Bieri
Institutional Support
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)