Automatic Linear Conductor Generation Solution for Lumped Parameter Models 2005-01-3059
A novel method to calculate linear conductors for thermal lumped parameter (TLP) models has been developed and prototyped by ESA. The method, the so called “Far-Field” approach, is a generic empirical method leading to linear conductors that are directly comparable to conductors derived using the traditional TLP formulation, well known to space thermal engineers. One of the benefits over alternative approaches is that, even for non-trivial shapes, this method leads to a mathematical model that the engineer can fully understand and, if needed, easily modify and extend. This paper starts by presenting an overview of the Far-Field methodology and then focuses in detail on the implementation and validation of the module within the thermal-radiative software ESARAD. Extensive validation has been carried out using models ranging from simple geometries, which can be easily mapped to analytical solutions, to more complex geometries. Results from the validation are presented, drawing conclusions on the overall approach as a solution to the automatic linear conductor generation problem.