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A Study of Mars Dust Environment Simulation at NASA Johnson Space Center Energy Systems Test Area Resource Conversion Test FacilityThe dust environment on Mars is planned to be simulated in a 20 foot thermal-vacuum chamber at the Johnson Space Center, Energy Systems Test Area Resource Conversion Test Facility in Houston, Texas. This vacuum chamber will be used to perform tests and study the interactions between the dust in Martian air and ISPP hardware. This project is to research, theorize, quantify, and document the Mars dust/wind environment needed for the 20 foot simulation chamber. This simulation work is to support the safety, endurance, and cost reduction of the hardware for the future missions. The Martian dust environment conditions is discussed. Two issues of Martian dust, (1) Dust Contamination related hazards, and (2) Dust Charging caused electrical hazards, are of our interest. The different methods of dust particles measurement are given. The design trade off and feasibility were studied. A glass bell jar system is used to evaluate various concepts for the Mars dust/wind environment simulation. It was observed that the external dust source injection is the best method to introduce the dust into the simulation system. The dust concentration of 30 Mg/M3 should be employed for preparing for the worst possible Martian atmosphere condition in the future. Two approaches thermal-panel shroud for the hardware conditioning are discussed. It is suggested the wind tunnel approach be used to study the dust charging characteristics then to be apply to the close-system cyclone approach. For the operation cost reduction purpose, a dehumidified ambient air could be used to replace the expensive CO2 mixture for some tests.
Document ID
Document Type
Chen, Yuan-Liang Albert
(Oklahoma Baptist Univ. Shawnee, OK United States)
Date Acquired
August 19, 2013
Publication Date
May 1, 1999
Publication Information
Publication: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)/American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) Summer Faculty Fellowship Program, 1998
Volume: 1
Subject Category
Research And Support Facilities (Air)
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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