An Evaluation of Water Recovery from Brine
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SubjectWater conservation; Water resources development; International Space Station--Environmental aspects; Space flight--Environmental aspects; Salt
Saving resources is critical to controlling the costs of manned space exploration. It is important to explore technologies for recovering essential resources, such as water, from waste in space. The current water recovery system used on the International Space Station is capable of recovering 85% of the water from waste liquids (urine and humidity condensate). The wastewater brine generated from this process is typically a 20% solid solution, and it is proposed that brine be further dewatered to recover an additional 95% of its water. This study was aimed at evaluating the characteristics of dewatered brine and its behavior throughout the dewatering process. Vacuum distillation was the chosen method of evaporation. Three trials were run using a 20% sodium and potassium chloride solution, untreated urine, and wastewater brine. The results discovered in this experiment will be considered in evaluating and developing candidate technologies for brine water recovery and processing.
Advisor: John Fisher, NASA Ames Research Center