Design and Performance of a Space Based Heat Pipe Heat Exchanger Radiator Panel 932152

This paper presents the analytical results of a thermal hydraulic study to determine an “optimum” two-phase heat pipe/heat exchanger radiator panel configuration for the Space Station Freedom. The study was based on using conventional axially grooved heat pipes in combination with integral two-phase heat exchangers. Various design parameters were traded to arrive at an optimized panel design that satisfied the thermal requirements. For two-phase flow across a radiator array consisting of eight panels with fourteen heat pipes per panel, small diameter lines acting as flow restrictions are needed at the exit of each heat exchanger to balance the flow across each panel and the radiator array. The paper also presents the test results with a representative subscale heat pipe/heat exchanger radiator panel. In general, the heat pipes exhibit transport capabilities that exceed the design requirements. Balanced flow across each heat exchanger was also demonstrated.


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