1993-07-01

Sorption Refrigerators A Review of Current Development Status 932118

Cooling infrared and sub-millimeter detectors to temperatures less than 120 K can significantly improve their performance. However, space-based sensors historically have not used active cooling because of the long life requirement as well as demanding requirements for low weight, power, size, and vibration. Sorption refrigerators have the potential to meet these requirements. These refrigerators use a closed cycle Joule-Thomson expansion to produce cooling. High pressure gas compression is produced through thermally-driven chemisorption or physisorption processes.
This paper reviews Aerojet's involvement in the development of sorption coolers. System configurations for producing various temperatures, sorbent materials, performance enhancing regeneration techniques, and associated component technologies are included. Finally, some recent efforts at bringing sorption to the commercial market are reported.

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