Waste not, want not (a rather shitty idea)

22 Jun

From December 1967 Popular Mechanics comes this oddball idea:

Fuel from space waste

Monex W, a new rocket fuel containing human wastes and sewage, has been used to test fire a liquid injection-type rocket by Rocket Research Corp. The propellant, nearly 40 percent waste, is shown at left, above; the test firing is at right. The developers say the fuel could be used on a spacecraft to operate rockets for velocity correction, attitude control, and the like.

A little more information from a post on a MythBusters forum (after the salami rocket episode, I assume):

Human feces combined with carbon black, powdered metal and a solid oxidizer combined in a mixmaster produces rocket fuel. Named “MONEX W” and developed by “Rocket Research Corp” have successfully fired it in liquid injection rocket engines up to 250 lbs. of thrust. “Three men on a year long spaceflight could produce a ton of waste” All this was claimed in a March 1968 issue of Science and Mechanics. Forget the MEAT rockets, eat the meat and make your own blend of rocket fuel.

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