Design & Testing of a Catalytic Oxidizer for Cleaning of Hazardous Compounds in the Trash Compaction & Processing System (TCPS) Effluent Gas



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


2024 International Conference on Environmnetal Systems


The Trash Compaction & Processing System (TCPS) being developed for long duration space missions compresses, safens, and dries crew-generated standard trash, recovers and recycles water, and manages gaseous effluent produced during trash processing. As the trash is processed at elevated temperatures, it emits gaseous effluent containing Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) and other complex gaseous contaminants which evolve from the trash load. To conserve valuable resources during flight these gases are managed and recycled to reduce consumable losses. A Catalytic Oxidizer (CatOx) was developed by Sierra Space to treat this contaminated gas and render it safe for reintroduction into the cabin environment. VOCs are catalytically decomposed at high temperatures using a specially synthesized proprietary catalyst. Resulting gas outflows can be safely released into the cabin atmosphere, or through other downstream systems. The TCPS CatOx is functional at diverse pressure ranges and can be readily adopted for other trace contaminant control applications in spaceflight. Testing using representative contaminants was conducted to characterize and quantify the performance of the CatOx in support of the TCPS flight hardware development, with discussion of performance measures including destruction efficiency, thermal performance, and suitability for integration with other life-support systems.


Joe Klopotic, Sierra Space, USA
Nate Shakouri, Sierra Space, USA
Zachary Petrie, Sierra Space, USA
Brynne Coleman, Sierra Space, USA
John Wetzel, Sierra Space, USA
Sam Moffatt, Sierra Space, USA
ICES304: Physico-Chemical Life Support- Waste Management Systems- Technology and Process Development
The 53rd International Conference on Environmental Systems was held in Louisville, Kentucky, USA, on 21 July 2024 through 25 July 2024.


Trash Compaction & Processing, Logistics, CatOx, Source Contaminant Control, Trace Contaminant Control System, TCCS, Catalytic, Catalyst, Trash Processing, Station Trash, Packed Bed