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Proceedings Paper

Identification of collected volatile condensable material (CVCM) from ASTM E595 of silicone damper fluid
Author(s): Myriam P. Easton; Aura C. Labatete-Goeppinger; Jesse D. Fowler; De-Ling Liu
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Paper Abstract

Polydimethylsiloxane damping fluids used for structural deployment mechanisms are not required to be low outgassing. During normal use, these damping fluids are typically encapsulated; however, an unintentional leak may occur which would cause an undesirable contamination at the leak point and form volatile condensable that could reach contamination-sensitive surfaces, degrading the performance of satellites. The collected volatile condensable material (CVCM) at 25 °C from ASTM E595 of a damping fluid, MeSi-300K, was < 0.10%, when the damping fluid was maintained at 125 °C for 24 hours under 10-6 Torr vacuum. MeSi-300K viscosity is 300,000 cSt, which indicates an average molecular weight (MW) of 204,000. This large MW polymer would contain about 2,756 dimethyl siloxane (DMS) units in the chain. These long chains are not expected to be volatile; however, during manufacture, linear chains and cyclic compounds of a smaller number of DMS units produced are volatile. Gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC-MS) was used to identify the CVCM. Characterization of these materials revealed that the CVCM contained higher MW siloxanes, straight chain and cyclic, in the range of 682 to 1196 (9 to 16 DMS units), whereas CVCM from spacequalified, silicone-based materials have lower MW, 222 to 542 (3 to 7 DMS units). Consequently, contamination from MeSi-300K material would produce greater amounts of higher-MW siloxanes than space-qualified silicones. These higher-MW species would be harder to remove by evaporation and could remain on sensitive surfaces.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 September 2014
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 9196, Systems Contamination: Prediction, Measurement, and Control 2014, 919607 (18 September 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2063980
Show Author Affiliations
Myriam P. Easton, The Aerospace Corp. (United States)
Aura C. Labatete-Goeppinger, The Aerospace Corp. (United States)
Jesse D. Fowler, The Aerospace Corp. (United States)
De-Ling Liu, The Aerospace Corp. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9196:
Systems Contamination: Prediction, Measurement, and Control 2014
Nancy Carosso; Joanne Egges, Editor(s)

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