Assessment of Biocide Impacts on Life Support and Extravehicular Activity Architectures


Iodine has historically been used to minimize microbial growth in wetted portions of life support and Exploration Extravehicular Mobility Unit (xEMU) systems. Because of challenges with dormancy, the life support water processing team has baselined silver as a biocide for future Exploration missions, but continues to consider iodine, bromine, and chlorine as options. An assessment was conducted to identify and evaluate the trade space for implementation of various biocides in Lunar surface, Mars transit, and Martian surface vehicles. The team identified sixteen possible biocide sources for use in Exploration systems. An evaluation of the effects of each biocide on crew health, life support hardware, and xEMU hardware was conducted and resulted in eleven potential biocide architectures. Here we report the results of the architecture trade study and recommendations for future investigations.


Morgan Abney, NASA
Kevin McCarley, NASA
Colin Campbell, NASA
Michael Callahan, NASA
Spencer Williams, NASA
Daniel Gazda, NASA
Eliza Montgomery, NASA
Lance Delzeit, NASA
Martin Feather, JPL CIT
ICES501: Life Support Systems Engineering and Analysis
The 50th International Conference on Environmental Systems was held virtually on 12 July 2021 through 14 July 2021.


Potable Water, Biocide, Architecture, Life Support, xEMU, Material Compatibility