Advanced Microgravity Compatible, Integrated Laundry System

Period of Performance: 01/01/2013 - 12/31/2013

$698K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Umpqua Research Company
P.O. Box 609
Myrtle Creek, OR 97457
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Abstract

An Advanced Microgravity Compatible, Integrated laundry System (AMCILS) is proposed that uses a two phase water / water vapor system to allow good agitation of clothing during the wash & rinse cycle. Drying will be accomplished utilizing microwave energy addition and "jet" air flow to fluff and move clothing in the washing chamber. Operation in a two phase water / water vapor system precludes the formation of sustainable foam in the wash effluent while allowing adequate volume for agitation of clothing in a weightless environment while using a minimum amount of water. Drying using air "jets" and microwave addition was proven during micro-gravity testing performed in the Single Phase Space Laundry Phase II program (NASA contract No. NAS9-18362, Jan. 1993) The Phase II effort will build upon the successful Phase I feasibility demonstration of the AMCIL concept and result in delivery of a working AMCIL prototype whose performance will be thoroughly characterized and delivered to NASA for independent testing.The AMCIL promises a reduction in ESM associated with crew clothing on long duration missions through the reduction of expendables. Clothing can be re-used which minimizes ESM associated with storage of new clothing, and waste storage associated with used clothing.