The vision

What if humans on Mars didn’t need materials from Earth?

What if you could establish human presence on Mars without launching building materials for a colony, rocket fuel for return trips, and oxygen for astronauts? Opus 12’s technology enables “in situ resource utilization”, converting the Martian atmosphere into useful materials.

The ingredients

Everything we need is already there.

The atmosphere of Mars is 95% CO₂, and with recent discoveries of water on the Red Planet, we have the inputs we need for our process.

An Opus 12 reactor could be sent to Mars, along with solar panels or a nuclear reactor to provide electricity to drive the CO₂ conversion reaction.


Many of the CO₂-derived products that we’re commercializing could play a critical role on Mars



Tools, fuel, and fresh air

Many of the CO₂-derived products that Opus 12 is commercializing on Earth would play a critical role on a Mars mission. Methane can be used as rocket fuel and as feedstock for microbes to create food or medicine. Ethylene can be used to create 3D-printable plastics for tools, containers, and shelters.

Producing carbon monoxide from CO₂ with our process consumes no net water, thereby offering an attractive way to generate oxygen without consuming the limited water resources of Mars.



What are we developing?

A prototype for NASA creating methane & ethylene from CO₂ in one step.

Opus 12’s technology offers several advantages over other approaches, such as Fischer Tropsch for ethylene and Sabatier for methane. Our reactor can ramp in seconds to full capacity; it is operationally simple with no moving parts, which makes it ideal for autonomous operation, and our core reactor design is already space-proven.