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On-site manufacture of propellant oxygen from lunar resourcesThe Aerojet Carbothermal Process for the manufacture of oxygen from lunar resources has three essential steps: the reduction of silicate with methane to form carbon monoxide and hydrogen; the reduction of carbon monoxide with hydrogen to form methane and water; and the electrolysis of water to form oxygen and hydrogen. This cyclic process does not depend upon the presence of water or water precursors in the lunar materials; it will produce oxygen from silicates regardless of their precise composition and fine structure. Research on the first step of the process was initiated by determining some of the operating conditions required to reduce igneous rock with carbon and silicon carbide. The initial phase of research on the second step is completed; quantitative conversion of carbon monoxide and hydrogen to methane and water was achieved with a nickel-on-kieselguhr catalyst. The equipment used in and the results obtained from these process studies are reported in detail.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Legacy CDMS
Document Type
Conference Paper
Rosenberg, Sanders D.
(Aerojet TechSystems Co. Sacramento, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
September 6, 2013
Publication Date
February 1, 1992
Publication Information
Publication: Arizona Univ., Proceedings of the Lunar Materials Technology Symposium
Subject Category
Engineering (General)
Accession Number
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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