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Technical Paper

Overview of NASA's Thermal Control System Development for Exploration Project

2009-07-12
2009-01-2436
NASA's Constellation Program includes the Orion, Altair, and Lunar Surface Systems (LSS) project offices. The first two elements, Orion and Altair, are manned space vehicles while the third element is broader and includes several subelements including Rovers and a Lunar Habitat. The upcoming planned missions involving these systems and vehicles include several risks and design challenges. Due to the unique thermal environment, many of these risks and challenges are associated with the vehicles' thermal control system. NASA's Exploration Systems Mission Directorate (ESMD) includes the Exploration Technology Development Program (ETDP). ETDP consists of several technology development projects. The project chartered with mitigating the aforementioned risks and design challenges is the Thermal Control System Development for Exploration Project.
Technical Paper

Operational Thermal Control of Cassini Titan Flybys

2003-07-07
2003-01-2685
The Cassini spacecraft will make 45 targeted flybys of Saturn's largest moon, Titan. 25 flybys will have a relatively low closest approach target altitude in Titan's atmosphere. An operational thermal control strategy has been developed for these flybys. The challenge met was to provide flyby operational thermal control that enabled science and remained within design limitations and Project constraints. Thermal engineers adopted a Systems-level approach that insured appropriate risk mitigation and information accuracy. This paper focuses on the technical thermal control evaluation and strategy, the Systems-level approach taken, and lessons learned and recommendations in an operations environment.
Technical Paper

Operational Psychological Issues for Mars and other Exploration Missions

1997-07-01
972290
Long duration NASA-Mir program missions, and the planned International Space Station missions, have given impetus for NASA to implement an operational program of psychological preparation, monitoring, and support for its crews. For exploration missions measured in years, the importance of psychological issues increases exponentially beyond what is currently done. Psychologists' role should begin during the vehicle design and crew selection phases. Extensive preflight preparation must focus on individual and team adaptation, and leadership. Factors such as lack of resupply options and communication delays will alter in-flight monitoring and support capabilities, and require a more self-sufficient crew. Involvement in postflight recovery will also be necessry to ensure appropriate reintegration to the family and job.
Technical Paper

Operation of an Electronic Nose Aboard the Space Shuttle and Directions for Research for a Second Generation Device

2000-07-10
2000-01-2512
A flight experiment to test the operation of an Electronic Nose developed and built at JPL and Caltech was done aboard STS-95 in October-November, 1998. This ENose uses conductometric sensors made of insulating polymer-carbon composite films; it has a volume of 1.7 liters, weighs 1.4 kg including the operating computer and operates on 1.5 W average power. In the flight experiment, the ENose was operated continuously for 6 days and recorded the sensors' response to changes in air in the mid-deck of the orbiter. The ENose had been trained to identify and quantify ten common contaminants at the 24-hour Spacecraft Maximum Allowable Concentration (SMAC) level. Most SMACs are on the order of 10-100 ppm. The experiment was controlled by collecting air samples daily and analyzing them using standard analytical techniques after the flight. The device is microgravity insensitive.
Technical Paper

Operation of Third Generation JPL Electronic Nose on the International Space Station

2009-07-12
2009-01-2522
The Third Generation ENose is an air quality monitor designed to operate in the environment of the US Lab on the International Space Station (ISS). It detects a selected group of analytes at target concentrations in the ppm regime at an environmental temperature range of 18 – 30 °C, relative humidity from 25 – 75% and pressure from 530 to 760 torr. This device was installed and activated on ISS on Dec. 9, 2008 and has been operating continuously since activation. Data are downlinked and analyzed weekly. Results of analysis of ENose monitoring data show the short term presence of low concentration of alcohols, octafluoropropane and formaldehyde as well as frequent short term unknown events.
Journal Article

On-Orbit Thermal Performance of the TES Instrument-Three Years in Space

2008-06-29
2008-01-2118
The Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer (TES), launched on NASA's Earth Observing System Aura spacecraft on July 15, 2004 has successfully completed over three years in space and has captured a number of important lessons. The instrument primary science objective is the investigation and quantification of global climate change. TES measures the three-dimensional distribution of ozone and its precursors in the lower atmosphere on a global scale. It is an infrared (IR) high resolution, imaging Fourier Transform Spectrometer (FTS) with a 3.3 to 15.4 μm spectral coverage required for space-based measurements to profile essentially all infrared-active molecules present in the Earth's lower atmosphere. The nominal on-orbit mission lifetime is 5 years. The Aura spacecraft flies in a sun-synchronous near-circular polar orbit with 1:38 pm ascending node.
Technical Paper

On-Orbit Performance of the TES Loop Heat Pipe Heat Rejection System

2008-06-29
2008-01-2000
Launched on NASA's Aura spacecraft on July 15, 2004, JPL's Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer (TES) has been operating successfully for over three years in space. TES is an infrared high resolution, imaging fourier transform spectrometer with spectral coverage of 3.3 to 15.4 μm to measure and profile essentially all infrared-active molecules present in the Earth's lower atmosphere. It measures the three-dimensional distribution of ozone and its precursors in the lower atmosphere on a global scale. The Aura spacecraft was successfully placed in a sun-synchronous near-circular polar orbit with a mean altitude of 705 km and 98.9 minute orbit period. The observatory is designed for a nominal 5 year mission lifetime. The instrument thermal design features include four temperature zones needed for efficient cryogenic staging to provide cooling at 65 K, 180 K, 230 K and 300 K.
Journal Article

On-Orbit Performance of the Moon Mineralogy Mapper Instrument

2009-07-12
2009-01-2390
Launched on India's Chandrayaan-1 spacecraft on October 22, 2008, JPL's Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3) instrument has successfully completed over six months of operation in space. M3 is one in a suite of eleven instruments, six of which are foreign payloads, flying onboard the Indian spacecraft. Chandrayaan-1, managed by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) in Bangalore, is India's first deep space mission. Chandrayaan-1 was launched on the upgraded version of India's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-XL) from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre, SHAR, Sriharikota, India. The primary science objective of the M3 instrument is the characterization and mapping of the lunar surface composition in the context of its geologic evolution. Its primary exploration goal is to assess and map the Moon mineral resources at high spatial resolution to support future targeted missions.
Technical Paper

Noise Environment Reduction Foam Spheres in Space

1989-09-01
892373
The advent of lightweight fairings for new spacecraft and the increased thrust of new launch vehicles have intensified the need for better techniques for predicting and for reducing the low frequency noise environment of spacecraft at lift-off. This paper presents a VAPEPS (VibroAcoustic Payload Environment Prediction System) parametrical analysis of the noise reduction of spacecraft fairings and explores a novel technique for increasing the low frequency noise reduction of lightweight fairings by approximately 10 dB.
Technical Paper

Monitoring Space Shuttle Air for Selected Contaminants Using an Electronic Nose

1998-07-13
981564
A miniaturized electronic nose has been constructed at JPL in collaboration with Caltech. This array of conductometric sensors has been trained to detect and quantify the presence of vapors in the air; the compounds detected have been found as contaminants in shuttle air. This device has potential application as a miniature, distributed device for monitoring and controlling the constituents in air.
Technical Paper

Molecular Sieve CO2 Removal Systems for Future Missions: Test Results and Alternative Designs

1994-06-01
941396
Reversible adsorption on zeolite molecular sieve material allows selective removal of carbon dioxide (CO2) from spacecraft air without the use of expendables. The four-bed molecular sieve (4BMS) CO2 removal subsystem chosen for use on space station is based on proven Skylab technology and provides continuous CO2 removal from the cabin atmosphere and concentration for further processing downstream or venting overboard. A 4BMS subsystem has also been chosen to remove CO2 from air in the Systems Integration Research Facility (SIRF) at NASA/Johnson Space Center (JSC). After installation in the SIRF in 1992, the subsystem underwent extensive testing in which cycle time, process air flow rate, and process air inlet CO2 composition were varied. In order to obtain performance data required for integration, the subsystem was operated under both nominal and off-nominal conditions. Results of this testing are presented.
Technical Paper

Modification of the USOS to Support Installation and Activation of the Node 3 Element

2009-07-12
2009-01-2416
The International Space Station (ISS) program is nearing an assembly complete configuration with the addition of the final resource node module in early 2010. The Node 3 module will provide critical functionality in support of permanent long duration crews aboard ISS. The new module will permanently house the regenerative Environment Control and Life Support Systems (ECLSS) and will also provide important habitability functions such as waste management and exercise facilities. The ISS program has selected the Port side of the Node 1 “Unity” module as the permanent location for Node 3 which will necessitate architecture changes to provide the required interfaces. The USOS ECLSS fluid and ventilation systems, Internal Thermal Control Systems, and Avionics Systems require significant modifications in order to support Node 3 interfaces at the Node 1 Port location since it was not initially designed for that configuration.
Technical Paper

Methodologies for Critical Body Organ Space Radiation Risk Assessments

1993-07-01
932211
One of the risks associated with long-term space flights is cancer incidence resulting from chronic exposure to space radiation. Assessment of incurred risk from radiation exposure requires quantifying the dose throughout the body. The space radiation exposure received by Space Shuttle astronauts is measured by thermoluminescent dosimeters (TLDs) worn during every mission. These dosimeters measure the absorbed dose to the skin, but the dose to internal organs is required for estimating the cancer risk induced by space radiation. A method to extrapolate these skin dose measurements to realistic organ specific dose estimates, using the Computerized Anatomical Man (CAM) and Computerized Anatomical Female (CAF) models, is discussed in detail. A transport code, which propagates high energy nucleon and charged particles, is combined with the CAM/CAF-generated shielding areal distributions to evaluate the absorbed dose at selected organ sites.
Technical Paper

Mechanically Pumped Fluid Loop Technologies for Thermal Control of Future Mars Rovers

2006-07-17
2006-01-2035
Future planetary science missions planned for Mars are expected to be more complex and thermally challenging than any of the previous missions. For future rovers, the operational parameters such as landing site latitudes, mission life, distance traversed, and rover thermal energy to be managed will be significantly higher (two to five times) than the previous missions. It is a very challenging problem to provide an effective thermal control for the future rovers using traditional passive thermal control technologies. Recent investigations at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) have shown that mechanical pump based fluid loops provide a robust and effective thermal control system needed for these future rovers. Mechanical pump based fluid loop (MPFL) technologies are currently being developed at JPL for use on such rovers. These fluid loops are planned for use during spacecraft cruise from earth to Mars and also on the Martian surface operations.
Technical Paper

Measurement of Trace Water Vapor in a Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly Product Stream

2004-07-19
2004-01-2444
The International Space Station Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly (CDRA) uses regenerable adsorption technology to remove carbon dioxide (CO2) from cabin air. CO2 product water vapor measurements from a CDRA test bed unit at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center were made using a tunable infrared diode laser differential absorption spectrometer (TILDAS) provided by NASA Glenn Research Center. The TILDAS instrument exceeded all the test specifications, including sensitivity, dynamic range, time response, and unattended operation. During the CO2 desorption phase, water vapor concentrations as low as 5 ppmv were observed near the peak of CO2 evolution, rising to levels of ∼40 ppmv at the end of a cycle. Periods of high water concentration (>100 ppmv) were detected and shown to be caused by an experimental artifact.
Journal Article

Mars Science Laboratory Mechanically Pumped Fluid Loop for Thermal Control - Design, Implementation, and Testing

2009-07-12
2009-01-2437
The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission to land a large rover on Mars is being prepared for Launch in 2011. A Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG) on the rover provides an electrical power of 110 W for use in the rover and the science payload. Unlike the solar arrays, MMRTG provides a constant electrical power during both day and night for all seasons (year around) and latitudes. The MMRTG dissipates about 2000 W of waste heat to produce the desired electrical power. One of the challenges for MSL Rover is the thermal management of the large amount of MMRTG waste heat. During operations on the surface of Mars this heat can be harnessed to maintain the rover and the science payload within their allowable limits during nights and winters without the use of electrical survival heaters. A mechanically pumped fluid loop heat rejection and recovery system (HRS) is used to pick up some of this waste heat and supply it to the rover and payload.
Technical Paper

Mars Pathfinder Active Heat Rejection System: Successful Flight Demonstration of a Mechanically Pumped Cooling Loop

1998-07-13
981684
One of the new technologies successfully demonstrated on the recent Mars Pathfinder mission was the active Heat Rejection System (HRS). This system consisted of a mechanically pumped cooling loop, which actively controlled the temperatures of the various parts of the spacecraft. A single phase Refrigerant 11 liquid was mechanically circulated through the lander and cruise electronics box heat exchangers. This liquid transferred the excess heat to an external radiator on the cruise stage. This is the first time in unmanned spacecraft history that an active heat rejection system of this type has been used on a long duration spacecraft mission. Pathfinder was launched in December 1996 and landed on the Martian surface on July 4, 1997. The system functioned flawlessly during the entire seven months of flight from Earth to Mars. A life test set up of the cooling loop was used to verify the life of the system.
Technical Paper

Mars Exploration Rover Thermal Test Program Overview

2004-07-19
2004-01-2310
In January 2004, two Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) landed on the surface of Mars to begin their mission as robotic geologists. A year prior to these historic landings, both rovers and the spacecraft that delivered them to Mars, were completing a series of environmental tests in facilities at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. This paper describes the test program undertaken to validate the thermal design and verify the workmanship integrity of both rovers and the spacecraft. The spacecraft, which contained the rover within the aeroshell, were tested in a 7.5 m diameter thermal vacuum chamber. Thermal balance was performed for the near earth (hot case) condition and for the near Mars (cold case) condition. A solar simulator was used to provide the solar boundary condition on the solar array. IR lamps were used to simulate the solar heat load on the aeroshell for the off-sun attitudes experienced by the spacecraft during its cruise to Mars.
Technical Paper

Mars Exploration Rover Heat Rejection System Performance – Comparison of Ground and Flight Data

2004-07-19
2004-01-2413
Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission launched two spacecraft to Mars in June and July of 2003 and landed two rovers on Mars in January 2004. A Heat Rejection System (HRS) based on a mechanically pumped single-phase liquid cooling system was used to reject heat from electronics to space during the seven months cruise from Earth to Mars. Even though most of this HRS design was similar to the system used on Mars Pathfinder in 1996, several key modifications were made in the MER HRS design. These included the heat exchanger used in removing the heat from electronics, design of venting system used to vent the liquid prior to Mars entry, inclusion of pressure transducer in the HRS, and the spacecraft radiator design. Extensive thermal/fluids modeling and analysis were performed on the MER HRS design to verify the performance and reliability of the system. The HRS design and performance was verified during the spacecraft system thermal vacuum tests.
Technical Paper

Life Support Requirements and Technology Challenges for NASA's Constellation Program

2008-06-29
2008-01-2018
NASA's Constellation Program, which includes the mission objectives of establishing a permanently-manned lunar Outpost, and the exploration of Mars, poses new and unique challenges for human life support systems that will require solutions beyond the Shuttle and International Space Station state of the art systems. In particular, the requirement to support crews for extended durations at the lunar outpost with limited resource resupply capability will require closed-loop regenerative life support systems with minimal expendables. Planetary environmental conditions such as lunar dust and extreme temperatures, as well as the capability to support frequent and extended-duration Extra-vehicular Activity's (EVA's) will be particularly challenging.
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