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Heat Pipe Science and Technology, An International Journal

ISSN Print: 2151-7975
ISSN Online: 2151-7991

Archives: Volume 1, 2010 to Volume 8, 2017

Heat Pipe Science and Technology, An International Journal

DOI: 10.1615/HeatPipeScieTech.v5.i1-4.530
pages 465-472

ETHANE TWO-PHASE THERMAL CONTROL HARDWARE (HP, LHP) FOR CRYOGENICS APPLICATIONS

E. Turrión
IberEspacio, Calle Magallanes 3, 4th floor, 28015, Madrid, Spain
Joaquin Melendez
IberEspacio, Calle Magallanes 3, 4th floor, 28015, Madrid, Spain
Donatas Mishkinis
IberEspacio, Calle Magallanes 3, 4th floor, 28015, Madrid, Spain
Alejandro Torres
IberEspacio, Calle Magallanes 3, 4th floor, 28015, Madrid, Spain
M. Molina
Selex ES, Viale Europa, 20014 Nerviano MI (Italy)

ABSTRACT

Earth observation, scientific and weather satellites often require cryogenic temperatures for onboard equipment operation. Traditional ammonia two-phase thermal control devices (Loop Heat Pipes and Heat Pipes) operate typically under an operational temperature range from -40 to +80 °C. For applications in the cryogenics and near cryogenics range (temperatures from -130°C to -40°C) another working fluid is needed. However, many cryogenic fluids cannot be directly used in classical ammonia LHP/HP designs since they are in supercritical state at ambient (storage) conditions and require additional volumes and special elements/procedures for starting up. This paper describes the design of ethane LHP and HPs based on classical ammonia LHP/HP architecture and reports test results in vacuum chamber. The ethane LHP showed efficient and stable performance in various hot and cold cases (-100°C, 15W and -40°C, 60W). A thermo-fluid model was validated against results. The ethane HPs were produced and tested for an optical head thermal control application. They were tested for an operative temperature range from -133°C to -73 °C. Maximum heat transfer was determined. Performance at low power was specifically investigated, both in horizontal (0G) and thermosyphon (ground testing) configuration. The stop of active heat transfer above the critical point (32°C) was verified as an additional interesting thermal control feature.


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