Human poo to power rockets to moon
Human Poo to Power Rockets to Moon. A new research has revealed about the development of the process that turns human waste into rocket fuel.
Washington: A new research has revealed about the development of the process that turns human waste into rocket fuel.
Researcher Pratap Pullammanappallil from University of Florida said that it could be used on campus or around town, or anywhere, to convert waste into fuel.
In 2006, NASA began making plans to build an inhabited facility on the moon's surface between 2019 and 2024 and as part of NASA's moon-base goal, the agency wanted to reduce the weight of spacecraft leaving Earth.
Historically, waste generated during spaceflight would not be used further, so NASA stores it in containers until it's loaded into space cargo vehicles that burn as they pass back through the Earth's atmosphere and for future long-term missions, though, it would be impractical to bring all the stored waste back to Earth.
Dumping it on the moon's surface is not an option, so the space agency entered into an agreement with UF to develop test ideas.
Pullammanappallil added that they were trying to find out how much methane can be produced from uneaten food, food packaging and human waste.
Pullammanappallil continued that the idea was to see whether we could make enough fuel to launch rockets and not carry all the fuel and its weight from Earth for the return journey and they found that enough methane that can be used to fuel the rockets can be produced to come back from the moon.
They found the process could produce 290 liters of methane per crew per day, all produced in a week and their results led to the creation of an anaerobic digester process, which kills pathogens from human waste, and produces biogas, a mixture of methane and carbon dioxide by breaking down organic matter in waste.
The study is published in the journal Advances in Space Research.