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Technical Paper

Design Evolution of the Capillary Pumped Loop (CAPL 2) Flight Experiment

1996-07-01
961431
The Capillary Pumped Loop Flight Experiment (CAPL 2) employs a passive two-phase thermal control system that uses the latent heat of vaporization of ammonia to transfer heat over long distances. CAPL was designed as a prototype of the Earth Observing System (EOS) instrument thermal control systems. The purpose of the mission was to provide validation of the system performance in microgravity, prior to implementation on EOS. CAPL 1 was flown on STS-60 in February, 1994, with some unexpected results related to gravitational effects on two-phase systems. Start-up difficulties on CAPL 1 led to a redesign of the experiment (CAPL 2) and a reflight on STS-69 in September of 1995. The CAPL 2 flight was extremely successful and the new “starter pump” design is now baselined for the EOS application. This paper emphasizes the design history, the CAPL 2 design, and lessons learned from the CAPL program.
Technical Paper

Performance of the CAPL 2 Flight Experiment

1996-07-01
961432
This paper describes flight test results of the CAPL 2 Flight Experiment, which is a full scale prototype of a capillary pumped loop (CPL) heat transport system to be used for thermal control of the Earth Observing System (EOS-AM) instruments. One unique feature of CAPL 2 is its capillary starter pump cold plate design, which consists of a single capillary starter pump and two heat pipes. The starter pump enhances start-up success due to its self-priming capability, and provides the necessary capillary pumping force for the entire loop. The heat pipes provide the required isothermalization of the cold plate. Flight tests included those pertinent to specific EOS applications and those intended for verifying generic CPL operating characteristics and performance limits. Experimental results confirmed that the starter pump was indeed self-priming and the loop could be successfully started every time.
Technical Paper

Flight Testing of the Capillary Pumped Loop Flight Experiment

1995-07-01
951566
The Capillary Pumped Loop Flight Experiment (CAPL) employs a passive two-phase thermal control system that uses the latent heat of vaporization of ammonia to transfer heat over long distances. CAPL was designed as a prototype of the Earth Observing System (EOS) instrument thermal control systems. The purpose of the mission was to provide validation of the system performance in micro-gravity, prior to implementation on EOS. CAPL was flown on STS-60 in February, 1994, with some unexpected results related to gravitational effects on two-phase systems. Flight test results and post flight investigations will be addressed, along with a brief description of the experiment design.
Technical Paper

Thermal Vacuum Testing of the Capillary Pumped Loop Flight Experiment

1994-06-01
941599
The Capillary Pumped Loop Flight Experiment (CAPL) is a prototype of the Earth Observing System (EOS) instrument thermal control systems, which are based on two-phase heat transfer technology. The CAPL experiment has been functionally tested in a thermal vacuum chamber at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). The tests performed included start-up tests, simulated EOS instrument power profiles, low and high power profiles, a variety of uneven coldplate heating tests, subcooling requirement tests, an induced deprime test, reprimes, saturation temperature changes, and a hybrid (mechanical pump-assist) test. There were a few unexpected evaporator deprimes, but overall the testing was successful. The results of all of the tests are discussed, with emphasis on the deprimes and suspected causes.
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