Plansee says that it made a fuel cell component on board NASA’s Perseverance rover, which recently landed on Mars.

The company made the part, used to divert gas into a fuel cell’s elements (interconnector) for OxEon Energy, a US-based company that specializes in solid oxide fuel cell development, energy conversion and storage. OxEon developed a hermetic solid oxide electrolysis cell (SOEC) stack to be used on the Mars rover.

According to the company, the cell is part of the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Utilization Experiment (MOXIE) intended to produce pure oxygen from Martian atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) by using a process called solid oxide electrolysis. If successful, the process could be deployed to produce oxygen for propellant oxidant in a Mars ascent vehicle and fill an oxygen reservoir that could be used for a return mission, Plansee says.

This story uses material from Plansee, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier.