Thermal Control in an Ambitious, Low-Cost Small-Sat Program 981640

Development, fabrication and launch of the German X-ray satellite ABRIXAS has been implemented as a pilot project in order to minimize program costs by introducing new management, procurement and verification methods. For the thermal control subsystems key issues are the early project involvement of thermal engineers in an integrated team, a competitive procurement policy without rules imposed by the customer and a verification philosophy which combines extensive thermal analysis with a reduced thermal test program involving critical components and a spacecraft system test. Besides these subjects the paper includes a description of design verification of critical units by analysis and thermal balance tests.


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