Accession Number:

AD0902099

Title:

Flexible Rolled-Up Solar Array

Descriptive Note:

Final technical rept. 1 Jul 1968-31 May 1972

Corporate Author:

HUGHES AIRCRAFT CO EL SEGUNDO CA SPACE AND COMMUNICATIONS GROUP

Report Date:

1972-06-30

Pagination or Media Count:

341.0

Abstract:

This report summarizes the design, development, qualification, and flight test of a 1.5-kw flexible rolled-up solar array power system. This system was launched on a thrust augmented ThorAgena vehicle system into a 400 nm polar orbit on 17 October 1971, has successfully completed a 6 month flight test, and continues to provide spacecraft power. The criteria, design tradeoffs, and analyses that led to the configuration of the 5.5-by 32-foot solar array, the two axis sun acquisition and tracking orientation mechanism, and the associated power electronics and instrumentation units are described. The results of development, qualification, and flight test are presented, as well as recommendations for design improvements or developments for future similar applications. The recommendations include principal parameters and performance data such as array aspect ratios, weight, and natural frequency for systems ranging from 0.5 to 20 kw. The flight data illustrate the compatibility of the flexible solar array concept with flight systems. Power output has been excellent with no evidence of mechanical damage from boost, deployment, or operational environments. Peak power degradation has been reflective of the normal reaction of solar cells to the space environment. Spacecraft and array dynamic interactions have been minimal and vehicle integration has proven straightforward and effective. The report illustrates the viability of the 1.5kw flexible array design as a flight power system in its own right and also as a module of power systems to the 20-kw level.

Subject Categories:

  • Electric Power Production and Distribution
  • Unmanned Spacecraft

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE