Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Norwegian gas measurement technology goes into space

28.08.2007
The Norwegian technology that is to monitor astronauts’ “indoor” climate has gone into space. In the future, similar equipment may help to improve the climate of workplaces on Earth itself.

The “Endeavour” space shuttle was recently launched carrying the apple of the eye of SINTEF scientist Atle Honne; gas measurement equipment and associated software for checking astronauts’ “indoor” climate.

In a few weeks, the 59-year-old SINTEF senior scientist will sit in a control room at NASA in Houston, where he will check that everything is working properly when the equipment is installed in the International Space Station (ISS).

Tests on board the Space Station

ANITA will be tested on board the ISS for ten days. If the instrument passes its exams, the next version could become the space station’s regular air-quality monitoring system.

However, the equipment will not be switched off when the ten-day test phase is over. Since it is already installed, NASA will use it to acquire better air-quality data in the ISS, in the first instance for six months.

“Down-to earth” benefits too

The measurement system, known as ANITA, is the result of a cooperative project between SINTEF and the German company Kayser-Threde GmbH. But although Honne has been project manager on the Norwegian side since day one of the project, he is no “space freak”.

“My involvement, and SINTEF’s, is due to the fact that the measurement technology involved is also highly suitable for use on Earth. It can be used for everything from monitoring industrial processes to checking the indoor climate of submarines and other environments where such checks are important”, says Honne.

All the same, it is a feather in his cap that the system should have become part of the space adventure.

“It is the most demanding market you can image”, says Honne proudly.

Makes countermeasures possible

The idea of ANITA is to prevent astronauts in the Space Station from having to breathe in unpleasant, toxic or carcinogenic gases.

Just as on Earth, gases diffuse out of walls, furnishings and equipment. Others may come from leakages or overheating, while the human body also emits gases. ANITA will enable astronauts to adopt countermeasures in the event of leaks or failures of the air purification system.

The gas monitoring equipment already installed on board the ISS measures only a few gases frequently and rapidly. Others are checked with a reaction time measured in hours, while some can only be measured after air samples have been returned to Earth.

Rapid but sensitive

ANITA is the leading candidate to take over the measurement programme on a permanent basis.

The wholly automatic system is sensitive, recognises and indicates the concentrations of individual gases, works rapidly and can present its results without delay. It “sees” the gases by means of beams of infrared light. Honne has developed the methods that the system uses to interpret its measurement data.

Back on Earth, Honne regards an ideal working day as one during which he has helped to produce results that “improve human health and make a few companies more wealthy, while giving me some interesting work to do”.

Aase Dragland | alfa
Further information:
http://www.sintef.no

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Global threat to primates concerns us all
19.01.2017 | Deutsches Primatenzentrum GmbH - Leibniz-Institut für Primatenforschung

nachricht Reducing household waste with less energy
18.01.2017 | FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz-Institut für Informationsinfrastruktur GmbH

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Scientists spin artificial silk from whey protein

X-ray study throws light on key process for production

A Swedish-German team of researchers has cleared up a key process for the artificial production of silk. With the help of the intense X-rays from DESY's...

Im Focus: Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin

For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.

According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Breaking the optical bandwidth record of stable pulsed lasers

24.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Choreographing the microRNA-target dance

24.01.2017 | Life Sciences

Spanish scientists create a 3-D bioprinter to print human skin

24.01.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>