Olivia Wambsganz

Olivia Wambsganz

Werner-Heisenberg-Gymnasium

 

Titel der Forschungsarbeit: Optimierung der Reaktorgeometrie zur Steigerung der Energieeffizien bei der Produktion von Wasser mithilfe von In Situ Resource Utilization zur Versorgung einer bemannten Mondbasis

Fakultät: Fakultät für Luftfahrt, Raumfahrt und Geodäsie

Lehrstuhl: Lehrstuhl für Raumfahrttechnik

Betreuung: Laura Grill, Daniel Pütz, Matthias Killian

Abstract der Forschungsarbeit

Over recent years, interest in building a long-range lunar base has increased for several reasons. In order to reduce the reliance of such a lunar base on transports from earth, a new method of gaining materials from resources accessible on the moon will be used. This method can also be referred to as In Situ Resource Utilization.

In this work the reduction of ilmenite, which can be found in lunar rocks, using hydrogen to produce water is going to be analyzed. The objective of this work is to determine under which thermal conditions the reaction will be the most energy‑efficient and which proportions an exemplary reactor model needs to have in order to minimize the heat radiation into the environment. To achieve this, a computer simulation is constructed, which calculates the radius and the height of the reactor model depending on the mass of the ilmenite per unit. Furthermore, the energy consumption of the reactor in dependence of the reaction temperature and the heater power, with which the mixture of lunar rocks will be heated, is going to be visualized. The results will then be brought into relation with the amount of water which can be produced per day.

In the range, which was analyzed in this simulation, it was only possible to achieve the necessary mass of produced water of 14.75 kg at the point with a heater power of 5000 W and a temperature of 1100 K. The ideal values for the reactor geometry at this point were 4.49 cm for the radius and 8.99 cm for the height. This paper however clearly shows that heat radiation into the surroundings has a significant impact on the reaction. Therefore, in future studies the loss of heat should be considered in the calculation of the per run reacting mass of ilmenite and the isolation of the reactor should be improved.