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Thales Alenia Space to extract oxygen on the Moon

Indicative Lunar lander with In Situ Resource Utilisation (ISRU) payload. Credit: Redwire Space Europe

Edinburgh / Bristol, 24 February 2022. – Thales Alenia Space has signed a €1 million study contract with ESA for a payload concept to extract oxygen from Moon rock. 

In order for humans to establish a sustainable Moon habitat, lunar resources will have to be utilized rather than transporting these from Earth. Such resources include water and oxygen among others. 

Thales Alenia has teamed up with AVS, Metalysis, Open University and Redwire Space Europe to work on a demonstration payload. ESA’s Lunar Mission uses molten salt and electrolysis to extract oxygen from the Moon rock, regolith, Thales Alenia said.

The concept won an ESA competition between multiple industrial consortia. The demonstration will validate that In Situ Resource Utilisation can be performed on the Moon efficiently to produce oxygen.

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