Beyond LEO: Life Support Requirements and Technology Development Strategy
This paper reviews basic Life Support Systems requirements for a conceptual Earth- Moon Libration Point-2 (EML-2) orbiting facility and conceptual early stage Lunar and Mars bases, highlighting commonalities and unique challenges for each. Recommendations are made for both near-term and long-term key technology development investments in a progressive approach to technology development that supports needs of the above missions and aligns with the current fiscally constrained environment. This approach leverages available commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware and already developed space-flight hardware, while providing the rationale for a corresponding modestly elevated risk posture intended to bring down development costs, and to prioritize which technologies unavailable through COTS are in highest need of development. The recommendations provide guidance for Life Support Systems technology development planning activities.