Browse Publications Technical Papers 2007-01-3028

Programmable Thermostats for MPLM Shell Heater Control ULF1.1 Thermal Performances 2007-01-3028

The Multi-Purpose Logistics Module (MPLM) is the primary carrier for “pressurized” logistics to and from the International Space Station (ISS). The MPLM is transported in the payload bay of the Space Shuttle and is docked to the ISS for unloading, and reloading, of contents within the ISS shirt sleeve environment. Foil heaters, controlled originally with bi-metallic thermostats, are distributed across the outside of the MPLM structure and are utilized to provide energy to the structure to avoid exposure to cold temperatures and prevent condensation.
The existing bi-metallic, fixed temperature set point thermostats have been replaced with Programmable Thermostats Modules (PTMs) in the Passive Thermal Control Subsystem (PTCS) 28Vdc shell heater circuits. The goal of using the PTM thermostat is to improve operational efficiency of the MPLM on-orbit shell heaters by providing better shell temperature control via feedback control capability. Each heater circuit contains a programmable thermostat connected to an external temperature sensor, a Resistive Temperature Device (RTD), which is used to provide continuous temperature monitoring capability. Each thermostat has programmable temperature set points and control spans. The data acquisition system uses a standard RS-485 serial interface communications cable to provide digital control capability.
The PTM system was designed by MSFC, relying upon ALTEC support for their integration within the MPLM system design, while KSC performed the installation and ground checkout testing of the thermostat and RS-485 communication cable on the MPLM FM1 flight module. The PTMs were used for the first time during the STS-121/ULF1.1 mission.
This paper will describe the design, development and verification of the PTM system, as well as the PTM flight performance and comparisons with SINDA thermal model predictions.


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