Browse Publications Technical Papers 2008-01-2002

Development of Passively Actuated Thermal Control Valves for Passive Control of Mechanically Pumped Single-Phase Fluid Loops for Space Applications 2008-01-2002

Passively activated thermal control valves were developed for use in a mechanically pumped single-phase fluid liquid loop (MPFL) of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover. A key approach to the thermal control of the rover with the fluid loop is to control the flow through the rover's heat generating or heat rejecting components. This is achieved by either splitting or mixing the fluid stream coming from different branches of the system at different temperatures; actively or passively controlled flow valves are typically used for such purposes. To meet the thermal control requirements of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover, a splitting and a mixing thermal control valves with gradual control capabilities using a linear thermal actuator and a spool was developed at Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). The key feature of these control valves is the balancing of the flow through the various branches of the fluid loop in order to balance the heat loads of the whole thermal system. This paper describes the general design and testing used in the development of the valves.


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