Advanced Thermal Management Systems for Lunar and Mars Mission Needs 921363
Significant improvements in thermal management system technologies will be required to support NASA's planned Lunar and Mars missions. These advances will include: the introduction of advanced materials for the reduction of radiator masses and enhanced survivability, and use of alternative working fluids. Existing thermal management systems use single phase pump looped radiators and two- phase heat pipes fabricated with metallic casings to reliably transport waste heat from spacecraft and reject it to space. As the system requirements change to emphasize both increased thermal management and survivability requirements, these metal thermal management systems will become mission limiting.
The Department of Energy, Department of Defense, and NASA have been investigating the use of ceramic materials for high temperature thermal management systems since the early 1970's, indicating that significant mass savings and deployability can be achieved by replacement of metallic heat pipe components with these materials. This paper provides a description of a low mass thermal management system incorporating ceramic materials and its characteristics.