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Technical Paper

A Summary of the Cassini System-Level Thermal Balance Test: Engineering Subsystems

1997-07-01
972475
The Cassini spacecraft, NASA's mission to investigate the Saturn system, has undergone a system-level thermal balance test program to permit verification of the engineering subsystem thermal designs in the simulated worst-case environments. Additionally, other objectives such as functional checkouts, collection of thermal data for analytical model adjustment, vacuum drying of propellant tanks, and flight temperature transducer verification were also completed. In the interest of cost and schedule, transient off-Sunpoint conditions were not tested. The testing demonstrated that the required system resources such as heater power and radiator area were adequate for all engineering subsystems. The only changes required from the results were related to the operation of some of the subsystems. In the instance of the thruster cluster assemblies, allowable flight temperature limits were exceeded for the assumed operational environment.
Technical Paper

A Summary of the Cassini System-Level Thermal Balance Test: Science Instruments

1997-07-01
972476
The Cassini spacecraft, NASA's mission to investigate the Saturn system, has undergone a system-level thermal balance test program to permit verification of the science instrument thermal designs in the simulated worst-case environments. Additionally, other objectives such as functional checkout, collection of thermal data for analytical model adjustment, and flight temperature transducer verification were also attained. In the interest of cost and schedule, transient off-sunpoint conditions were not tested. The test demonstrated that the required system resources such as heater power and radiator area were adequate. In the instance of the Cosmic Dust Analyzer, allowable flight temperature limits were violated, but this problem is being addressed without a significant impact to system resources or thermal design robustness. Finally, the thermal acceptability of a black Kapton “sock” was demonstrated for the magnetometer boom.
Technical Paper

Mechanical Pumped Cooling Loop for Spacecraft Thermal Control

1996-07-01
961488
The Mars Pathfinder (MPF) Spacecraft, scheduled for a December 1996 launch to Mars, uses a mechanically pumped loop to transfer dissipated heat from the insulated lander electronics to an external radiator. This paper discusses the tradeoffs performed before choosing a mechanical pumped loop as the thermal control system for MPF. It describes the analysis, tradeoffs, design, and predicted performance of this system. The various development tests performed are discussed, along with the current status of this cooling system. Finally, some thoughts on the development of mechanically pumped loops for future spacecraft are presented.
Technical Paper

Integrated Pump Assembly - An Active Cooling System for Mars Pathfinder Thermal Control

1996-07-01
961489
The Mars Pathfinder spacecraft which will be launched in December 1996 features an active cooling system for controlling the temperature of the spacecraft. This will be the first time that such a mechanical pump cooling system is used on an interplanetary or long duration flight (over two weeks) in space. The major element of the cooling system is the Integrated Pump Assembly (IPA). It uses centrifugal pumps to circulate liquid freon to transfer heat from spacecraft electronics to an external radiator. The IPA consists of redundant pumps, motor control electronics, thermal control valves, check valves, and an accumulator. The design and flight implementation of this pump assembly were accomplished in less than two years. This paper describes the design, fabrication, assembly, and testing of the IPA.
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