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Wed, 11/15/2023 - 02:00
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BIORAT 1 is the future technology demonstrator of a small-scale closed regenerative life support system aiming at regenerating a defined portion of the ISS air cabin. On-going activity is focusing on the design validation at sub-system level, accommodation scenario trade-off, system requirements review and preliminary design review. The present activity consists in additional tasks to the on-going activity and aims at:
  • upgrading and validating all mathematical models (biological, chemical, thermal,...) required for the control of the breadboard at sub-system and system level
  • defining the additional instrumentation required for the functional validation of the full breadboard automated performances
  • Upgrading the existing electrical ground support equipment, including hardware/ software and human-machine interface
  • Performing the breadboard functional tests and biological tests
  • Updating the system requirements and payload specifications of future technology demonstrator
  • Performing the preliminary design review and safety 0/I
  • Defining development plan for the phase C/D
In the framework of regenerative life support system investigations and development for long-term human space missions, the ultimate goal is to design robust processes that would operate in microgravity or reduced gravity conditions.
Among the potential processes to be assembled to reach a regenerative life support systems we can list: chemical/physical processes and biological processes.
BIORAT 1 has been conceived to be a future technology demonstrator of a closed air regeneration system for a mouse habitat, which comprises several sub-systems based on the above mentioned processes. In the early phase of development, the validity of the concept was successfully demonstrated at laboratory scale, using COTS equipment and mice as consumers. Further, subsequent activities have focused on the technology development of selected critical sub-systems such as the photo-bioreactor, the gas-liquid mixer/separator, solid-liquid separator and the control sub-system.
On-going activity is focusing on the design and breadboarding of the integrated liquid and gas loop including the photobioreactor, gas-liquid mixer/separator and associated control equipment and will be concluded by a first iteration of the system requirements for the future on-board demonstrator. This activity has been extended to mature the technology up to a preliminary design and refocus the future on-board demonstrator objective. Indeed, for programmatic reasons, the future on-board demonstrator will regenerate a defined portion of the ISS air cabin instead of regenerating the air of a mouse habitat. This implies modifications on the control strategy at sub-system and system level as well as update of all mathematical models.
In the present activity it is proposed to address the update of the control sub-system at large, including the refurbishment of the Electrical Ground Segment Equipment, which shall be validated by breadboard functional testing in fully automated conditions. Further, the future on-orbit demonstrator system requirements and payload specifications shall be updated. The activity shall be concluded by a Preliminary Design Review and Safety phase 0/I for the future on-orbit demonstrator.
Application Domain: 
Technology Domain: 
14 - Life & Physical Sciences
Competence Domain: 
6-Life & Physical Science Payloads, Life Support, Robotics & Automation
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Final Presentation