What is the MOXIE doing on Mars

MOXIE stands for Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment. It’s main goal is to produce oxygen on Mars. It part of NASA’s Perseverance rover and the Mars 2020 mission. It has been successful in creating oxygen from carbon dioxide. This first happen back in April 2021 and keep going. It was only two month after the rover landed. The reason for it is Mars’s atmosphere contains up to 95% carbon dioxide, so there’s plenty of it.


MOXIE takes Mars’s CO2 from the atmosphere through its dust-trapping HEPA filter. Then compresses it with a scroll pump, afterwards heat it up to 800°C. Finally sends it through a oxide electrolysis assembly for the CO2 to flow over the nickle-based catalyzed cathode then decomposes into CO and oxygen ions. There will be a by-product CO, which they’re working on to see if it’s possible to oxidize and make it into methane as a basic fuel.

NASA MOXIE page https://mars.nasa.gov/mars2020/spacecraft/instruments/moxie/