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Vapor Compression and Thermoelectric Heat Pumps for a Cascade Distillation Subsystem: Design and Experiment
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Author and Affiliation:
Erickson, Lisa R.(NASA Johnson Space Center, Houston, TX, United States);
Ungar, Eugene K.(NASA Johnson Space Center, Houston, TX, United States)
Abstract: Humans on a spacecraft require significant amounts of water for drinking, food, hydration, and hygiene. Maximizing the reuse of wastewater while minimizing the use of consumables is critical for long duration space exploration. One of the more promising consumable-free methods of reclaiming wastewater is the distillation/condensation process used in the Cascade Distillation Subsystem (CDS). The CDS heats wastewater to the point of vaporization then condenses and cools the resulting water vapor. The CDS wastewater flow requires heating for evaporation and the product water flow requires cooling for condensation. Performing the heating and cooling processes separately would require two separate units, each of which would demand large amounts of electrical power. Mass, volume, and power efficiencies can be obtained by heating the wastewater and cooling the condensate in a single heat pump unit. The present work describes and compares two competing heat pump methodologies that meet the needs of the CDS: 1) a series of mini compressor vapor compression cycles and 2) a thermoelectric heat exchanger. In the paper, the CDS system level requirements are outlined, the designs of the two heat pumps are described in detail, and the results of heat pump analysis and performance tests are provided. The mass, volume, and power requirement for each heat pump option is compared and the advantages and disadvantages of each system are listed.
Publication Date: Sep 10, 2012
Document ID:
20140000959
(Acquired Feb 27, 2014)
Subject Category: MAN/SYSTEM TECHNOLOGY AND LIFE SUPPORT
Report/Patent Number: JSC-CN-29260
Document Type: Conference Paper
Meeting Information: AIAA Space 2013 Conference and Exposition; 10-12 Sep. 2013; San Diego, CA; United States
Meeting Sponsor: American Inst. of Aeronautics and Astronautics; Reston, VA, United States
Financial Sponsor: NASA Johnson Space Center; Houston, TX, United States
Description: 13p; In English; Original contains color and black and white illustrations
Distribution Limits: Unclassified; Publicly available; Unlimited
Rights: No Copyright
NASA Terms: CONSUMABLES (SPACECREW SUPPLIES); WATER; WASTE WATER; HEAT EXCHANGERS; EVAPORATION; DISTILLATION; THERMOELECTRICITY; WATER RECLAMATION; HEAT PUMPS; PERFORMANCE TESTS; SYSTEMS ENGINEERING
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