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Extraction of Water from Lunar PermafrostRemote sensing indicates the presence of hydrogen rich regions associated with the lunar poles. The logical hypothesis is that there is cryogenically trapped water ice located in craters at the lunar poles. Some of the craters have been in permanent darkness for a billion years. The presence of water at the poles as well as other scientific advantages of a polar base, have influenced NASA plans for the lunar outpost. The lunar outpost has water and oxygen requirements on the order of 1 ton per year scaling up to as much as 5 tons per year. Microwave heating of the frozen permafrost has unique advantages for water extraction. Proof of principle experiments have successfully demonstrated that microwaves will couple to the cryogenic soil in a vacuum and the sublimed water vapor can be successfully captured on a cold trap. Dielectric property measurements of lunar soil simulant have been measured. Microwave absorption and attenuation in lunar soil simulant has been correlated with measured dielectric properties. Future work will be discussed.
Document ID
20090017892
Document Type
Other
Authors
Ethridge, Edwin C. (NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Kaukler, William (Alabama Univ. Huntsville, AL, United States)
Date Acquired
August 24, 2013
Publication Date
February 24, 2009
Subject Category
Lunar and Planetary Science and Exploration
Report/Patent Number
MSFC-2197
Meeting Information
Space, Propulsion and Energy Sciences International Forum(Huntsville, AL)
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other