Comparing Traditional Design Approaches to Thermal Management Design with Application to Responsive Space
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AIR FORCE RESEARCH LAB KIRTLAND AFB NM SPACE VEHICLES DIRECTORATE
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There has been a growing move in the aerospace industry and a growing need in the Department of Defense to make space more responsive and cost effective. Instead of taking years to design and deploy a new satellite, the goal is weeks or even days. To meet this challenge, the methodologies used to design, manufacture, test, launch, and deploy satellites must radically change. One of the most challenging aspects of this problem is the satellites Thermal Control System TCS. Traditionally, the TCS is vigorously designed, analyzed, and optimized for every satellite mission. The ideal TCS for responsive space would be robust and modular with an inherent plug-and-play capability. Unfortunately missions, payloads, and requirements for ORS are still somewhat nebulous. To provide a baseline for TCS design and to help bound the problem for the development of thermal plug-and-play systems, the range of external and internal heat loads for small satellites were evaluated, and the worst hot and cold cases were identified. Using these cases, two different design schemes were investigated and compared. The first was a semi-passive conduction based scheme, and the second was a thermal switch based system. Each system was able to meet the needs of the satellite for the hot case. However, excessive survival heater power was required for the semi-passive conduction based scheme. As for the thermal switch design scheme, the need for survival heaters was virtually eliminated at the cost of added system mass and complexity. From the designs, various design parameters were evaluated, and the feasibility of a one-sizefits- most approach was assessed.
- Electrical and Electronic Equipment
- Unmanned Spacecraft