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Proceedings Paper

Development of a flexible advanced loop heat pipe for across-gimball cryocooling
Author(s): Triem T. Hoang; Tamara A. O'Connell; Dmitry K. Khrustalev
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Paper Abstract

To provide cryocooling across a gimbaled joint still remains a difficult challenge for spacecraft engineers. Gimbaled cryogenic infrared payloads have very difficult-to-meet requirements for 2-axis motion and low torque. Thus the difficulty of making a cryogenic thermal connection across a gimbaled joint cannot be overstated. Because of the cryogenic nature of the connection, thermal joint flexibility, durability, reliability, material compatibility, differential expansion/contraction, and parasitic heat loss, are all complex technical concerns. Thus two primary issues of the proposed across-gimbal passive cryocooling system - management of heat parasitics and flexible/durable thermal connection between heat sources (infrared sensors/detectors) and heat sinks (cryocooler coldfingers) - are the main focus of the current development effort. A cryogenic Advanced Loop Heat Pipe proof-of-concept test loop that was developed in Phase I demonstrated a heat transport capability of 50W-m (20W over a distance of 2.5m) in 3/32"O.D. stainless steel lines. But more importantly, the test loop started up and operated reliably even in a 300K environment. In the follow-on Phase II, the research focus shifted to the development and demonstration of a low-torque durable flexure mechanism for a 2-axis gimbal.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 October 2003
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 5172, Cryogenic Optical Systems and Instruments X, (15 October 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.501493
Show Author Affiliations
Triem T. Hoang, TTH Research, Inc. (United States)
Tamara A. O'Connell, TTH Research, Inc. (United States)
Dmitry K. Khrustalev, Thermacore International, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5172:
Cryogenic Optical Systems and Instruments X
James B. Heaney; Lawrence G. Burriesci, Editor(s)

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