Test Results of the SHARE II Mid-deck Flight Experiment 921407

The SHARE II (Space Station Advanced Radiator Experiment II) Mid-deck Experiment was flown on board the Space Shuttle (STS-37) from April 5 to 12, 1991. The purpose of the experiment was to demonstrate the operation of several design changes proposed for the NASA/Grumman SHARE II heat pipe as a result of the lessons learned during the first SHARE flight (STS-29) in March 1989. Two test articles flew during the mission. The first, the Bubble Management Test Article, was a Plexiglas model of the monogroove heat pipe. This test article was primarily used to evaluate the performance of two 0-g bubble management devices; the re-designed evaporator screen artery and the condenser bubble trap. The second, the Blended Manifold Priming Test Article, also constructed of Plexiglas, was used to demonstrate passive self-priming of a heat pipe blended manifold connecting three evaporator legs to a single condenser leg. Both test articles used a 50/50 mixture of ethanol and water as the working fluid. A camcorder mounted to each of the test articles recorded the visual data, which was also downlinked through most of the test operations.
Overall, the experiment was highly successful, with all the major test objectives fulfilled, including blended manifold priming, condenser bubble trap operation, screen artery bubble ingestion, and elimination of hydraulic diameter mismatch.


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