Thermal Design & Analysis of Space-Craft for Lunar Descent and Operations. 2016-01-0212
TeamIndus is the only Indian participant in the Google Lunar X Prize (GLXP). GLXP, also referred to as Moon 2.0, is an inducement prize space competition organized by the X Prize Foundation, and sponsored by Google. The mission objective is to soft land a rover on moon, travel 500 meters and transmit HD videos and images to Earth. Team Indus’s strategy is to design and realize a lunar lander that will deliver a rover on to the surface of the moon which will accomplish GLXP mission objectives. The mission configuration comprises of four phases- Earth orbits, moon orbits, descent and surface operations.
The lander during its interplanetary journey from earth to moon is exposed to different thermal loads viz. solar load, earth IR and albedo, moon IR and albedo, cold space at 4K and eclipse periods. The lander is also exposed to high temperatures of thruster nozzle during orbital transfer maneuvers. This paper discusses the thermal control system (TCS) that has been evolved to protect the lander during descent on to the surface of moon and operations to complete the mission objectives.