Advanced water purification system for in Situ Resource Utilization

Stephen M. Anthony, Scott T. Jolley, James G. Captain, Ashtamurthy S. Pawate, Paul J.A. Kenis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


A main goal in the field of In Situ Resource Utilization is to develop technologies that produce oxygen from regolith to provide consumables to an extraterrestrial outpost. The processes developed reduce metal oxides in the regolith to produce water, which is then electrolyzed to produce oxygen. Hydrochloric and hydrofluoric acids are byproducts of the reduction processes, which must be removed to meet electrolysis purity standards. We previously characterized Nafion, a highly water selective polymeric proton-exchange membrane, as a filtration material to recover pure water from the contaminated solution. While the membranes successfully removed both acid contaminants, the removal efficiency of and water flow rate through the membranes were not sufficient to produce large volumes of electrolysis-grade water. In the present study, we investigated electrodialysis as a potential acid removal technique. Our studies have shown a rapid and significant reduction in chloride and fluoride concentrations in the feed solution, while generating a relatively small volume of concentrated waste water. Electrodialysis has shown significant promise as the primary separation technique in ISRU water purification processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAIAA SPACE 2013 Conference and Exposition
StatePublished - Oct 7 2013
EventAIAA SPACE 2013 Conference and Exposition - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Sep 10 2013Sep 12 2013

Publication series

NameAIAA SPACE 2013 Conference and Exposition


OtherAIAA SPACE 2013 Conference and Exposition
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego, CA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Aerospace Engineering


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