So, I've got a planet with this atmosphere.
The composition is:
- 60% NO
- 20% NO2
- 10% N2O
- 5% N2
- 5% O2
- traces of CO, CO2.
The surface pressure is 0.7 atm, temperatures range from -30 to +30 degrees Celsius. Temperature and pressure do not bring up any problems, but the composition of the atmosphere surely does.
If you leave the spaceship unprotected, you will probably suffocate while literally laughing to death: NO2 is poisonous but N2O is a gas with euphoric effects that is called "laughing gas".
Now, the astronauts want to design a device which separates the various oxides of nitrogen into N2 and O2 and mixes them at a ratio of 8:2 to create "normal" air.
My questions are:
- How would such a device work? I want one big version for spaceships and habitats and a smaller "breathing mask" which astronauts wear when exiting their habitats.
- Does a person who wants to step onto the surface of the planet need any equipment other than the special breathing mask?