On-Demand Non-Contact Distillation: Low-g Demonstration of a Leidenfrost Waste-Water Processor



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49th International Conference on Environmental Systems


Leidenfrost phenomenon is employed as a potential solution to NASA’s urine-water recovery problem by providing a method for on-demand non-contact distillation. Leidenfrost investigations have been almost exclusively conducted in terrestrial environments and are in turn largely defined by the ever-presence of gravity. In this work we demonstrate a variety of Leidenfrost effects for enormous liquid droplets in the microgravity environment of a 2.1 second drop tower. Dynamic Leidenfrost droplet impacts on a selection of heated hydrophilic and superhydrophobic surfaces in microgravity are presented. Nearly ideal elastic non-contact impacts and droplet oscillation modes are observed. Impact experiments are extended to a variety of heated substrates including macro-pillar arrays, confined passageways, and others. The potential for contamination-free processing is obvious, with the proof of concept to be pursued shortly.


Rowand Rasheed, Portland State University (PSU), USA
Mark Weislogel, Portland State University (PSU), USA
ICES303: Physio-Chemical Life Support - Water Recovery & Management Systems - Technology and Process Development
The 49th International Conference on Environmental Systems was held in Boston, Massachusetts, USA on 07 July 2019 through 11 July 2019.


Capillary, Fluidics, Water, Recovery, Urine, Waste, Leidenfrost, Superhydrophobic, Drop, Tower, NSTRF