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Proceedings Paper

Cryogenic cooling system for restoring IR science on the Hubble Space Telescope
Author(s): Nicholas M. Jedrich; Teri Gregory; Darrell F. Zimbelman; Edward S. Cheng; Larry Petro; Christine Cottingham; Matthew M. Buchko; Marc Kaylor; Francis X. Dolan
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Paper Abstract

This paper presents a description of the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Near Infrared Camera and Multi Object Spectrometer (NICMOS) Cooling System (NCS), the cutting edge technology involved, a comparison of predicted versus on-orbit thermal performance, as well as possible future space applications. The NCS hardware consists of the NICMOS Cryogenic Cooler (NCC), an Electronics Support Module (ESM), a Capillary Pumped Loop (CPL)/Radiator assembly, and associated interface harnessing. The NCC is a state-of-the-art reverse Turbo-Brayton cycle mechanical cooler employing micro turbo machinery, driven by advanced power conversion electronics, operating at speeds up to 450,000 revolutions per minute to remove heat from the NICMOS instrument. The ESM provides command, control, and power distribution to the NCS, as well as providing the primary interface to the existing HST electronics. A two-phase CPL system removes heat from the NCC and transfers it to the radiator mounted externally on the HST aft shroud. The system was installed during Servicing Mission 3B via extravehicular activities in March 2002. The NCS revived the NICMOS instrument, which experienced a reduced operational lifetime due to an internal thermal short in its dewar structure, and restored HST scientific infrared capability to operational status.

Paper Details

Date Published: 5 March 2003
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4850, IR Space Telescopes and Instruments, (5 March 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.461805
Show Author Affiliations
Nicholas M. Jedrich, Jackson & Tull (United States)
Teri Gregory, Jackson & Tull (United States)
Darrell F. Zimbelman, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Edward S. Cheng, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Larry Petro, Space Telescope Science Institute (United States)
Christine Cottingham, Lockheed Martin Technical Operations (United States)
Matthew M. Buchko, Swales Aerospace (United States)
Marc Kaylor, Swales Aerospace (United States)
Francis X. Dolan, Creare, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4850:
IR Space Telescopes and Instruments
John C. Mather, Editor(s)

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