Heat Transfer in Porous Insulations 941513

When gas conductance/natural convection plays a major role as heat transfer path, microporous insulations reveal distinct advantages compared to Multi-Layer Insulations (MLI). For re-entry vehicles as e. g. HERMES or capsules silica and ceramic microfiber insulations have been investigated by DASA/ERNO in a temperature range up to 650 °C or, respectively, up to 1200 °C. In the frame of an ESTEC funded study three types of microporous insulations - microfiber, microsphere and polyimide foam - have been analytically and experimentally investigated as candidates for the internal insulation of a MARS-lander in a carbon-dioxide atmosphere for temperatures ranging from - 110 °C to 50 °C. This paper compares the test results with analytical heat transfer calculations and describes methods to improve the thermal insulation performance.


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