MELFI Cooling Performance Characterization and Verification 2000-01-2308
The Minus Eighty (Degrees Celsius) Laboratory Freezer for the International Space Station (MELFI) is one of the freezers developed by ESA on behalf of NASA. Peculiar requirements for that facility are the long-term storage at low temperature, the rapid freezing of specimen to the required temperature, the large cold volume (300 l) and the low power consumption.
To verify those requirements before the manufacturing of the flight hardware, a dedicated test campaign was performed on a ground model.
This paper will start with a system overview, showing the main features of MELFI. The test set-up as well as their results will be presented and discussed, with particular emphasis on the methods used to predict the on-orbit (0-gravity) behaviour, by avoiding the sample internal convection and dewar internal convection during the test execution.