Space Mission Utility and Requirements for a Heat Melt Compactor
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Management of Waste on long-duration space missions is both a problem and an opportunity. Uncontained or unprocessed waste is a crew health hazard and a habitat storage problem. A Heat Melt Compactor (HMC) such as NASA has been developing is capable of processing space mission trash and converting it to useful products. The HMC is intended to process space mission trash to achieve a number of objectives including: volume reduction, biological safening and stabilization, water recovery, radiation shielding, and planetary protection. This paper explores the utility of the HMC to future space missions and how this translates into HMC system requirements.