For the first time, NASA is producing “pure oxygen” on Mars

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The unprecedented extraction of oxygen from the thin air of Mars was achieved on Tuesday by an experimental device aboard the rover. Perseverance, Six-wheeled vehicle, which landed on Mars on February 18th, after a 7-month flight from Earth.

Intervals NASAOn Wednesday, the device, which is about the size of a toaster, and is known as a moxie, produced about 5 grams of oxygen, enough for an astronaut to breath for about 10 minutes.

Despite the modesty of the initial product, the achievement marked the first experimental extraction of natural resources from an environment another planet Until he uses it Humans directly.

“Moxie is not just the first tool for producing oxygen in another world,” Trudy Curtis, an official in the Department of Space Mission Technology at NASA, said in a statement quoted by “Reuters”. She described it as the first technology of its kind to help future missions “live on (what yours) land” on another planet.

The device works through the electrolysis that is used Extreme heat To separate the oxygen atoms from the carbon dioxide gas, which makes up about 95 percent of the Martian atmosphere.

The remaining five percent in Mars air is made up primarily of molecular nitrogen and argon. Oxygen is present, but in negligible amounts.

But the availability of an abundant amount of oxygen is vital to humans’ exploration of the red planet, as a sustainable source of air that astronauts can breathe, and a necessary component of the rocket fuel needed to bring them back to Earth.

NASA says that the landing of four astronauts on the surface of Mars will require about seven metric tons of rocket fuel, in addition to 25 metric tons of oxygen.





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