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Developing Ultra Reliable Life Support for the Moon and MarsRecycling life support systems can achieve ultra reliability by using spares to replace failed components. The added mass for spares is approximately equal to the original system mass, provided the original system reliability is not very low. Acceptable reliability can be achieved for the space shuttle and space station by preventive maintenance and by replacing failed units, However, this maintenance and repair depends on a logistics supply chain that provides the needed spares. The Mars mission must take all the needed spares at launch. The Mars mission also must achieve ultra reliability, a very low failure rate per hour, since it requires years rather than weeks and cannot be cut short if a failure occurs. Also, the Mars mission has a much higher mass launch cost per kilogram than shuttle or station. Achieving ultra reliable space life support with acceptable mass will require a well-planned and extensive development effort. Analysis must define the reliability requirement and allocate it to subsystems and components. Technologies, components, and materials must be designed and selected for high reliability. Extensive testing is needed to ascertain very low failure rates. Systems design should segregate the failure causes in the smallest, most easily replaceable parts. The systems must be designed, produced, integrated, and tested without impairing system reliability. Maintenance and failed unit replacement should not introduce any additional probability of failure. The overall system must be tested sufficiently to identify any design errors. A program to develop ultra reliable space life support systems with acceptable mass must start soon if it is to produce timely results for the moon and Mars.
Document ID
20090036323
Document Type
Conference Paper
Authors
Jones, Harry W. (NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
August 24, 2013
Publication Date
July 12, 2009
Subject Category
Man/System Technology and Life Support
Report/Patent Number
ARC-E-DAA-TN509
Meeting Information
International Conference on Environmental Systems(Savannah, GA)
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 439906.02.01
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.