Innovative Multi-Environment, Multimode Thermal Control System 2007-01-3202
Innovative multi-environment multimode thermal management architecture has been described that is capable of meeting widely varying thermal control requirements of various exploration mission scenarios currently under consideration. The proposed system is capable of operating in a single-phase or two-phase mode rejecting heat to the colder environment, operating in a two-phase mode with heat pump for rejecting heat to a warm environment, as well as using evaporative phase-change cooling for the mission phases where the radiator is incapable of rejecting the required heat. A single fluid loop can be used internal and external to the spacecraft for the acquisition, transport and rejection of heat by the selection of a working fluid that meets NASA safety requirements. Such a system may not be optimal for each individual mode of operation but its ability to function in multiple modes may permit global optimization of the thermal control system. The architecture also allows flexibility in partitioning of components between the various Constellation modules to take advantage of operational requirements in various modes consistent with the mission needs. Preliminary design calculations using R-134 as working fluid show the concept to be feasible to meet the heat rejection requirements that are representative of the Crew Exploration Vehicle and Lunar Access Module for nominal cases. More detailed analyses to establish performance under various modes and environmental conditions are underway.