A Passive Solution to Differential Transient Cooling Issues Using Phase Change Materials
Thermal management systems (TMS) of armored ground vehicle designs are often incapable of sustained heat rejection during high tractive effort conditions and ambient conditions. During these conditions, which mainly consist of high torque low speed operations, gear oil temperatures can rise over the allowable 275°F limit in less than twenty minutes. This work outlines an approach to temporarily store excess heat generated by the differential during high tractive effort situations through the use of a passive Phase Change Material (PCM) retrofit thereby extending the operating time, reducing temperature transients, and limiting overheating. A numerical heat transfer model has been developed based on a conceptual vehicle differential TMS. The model predicts the differential fluid temperature response with and without a PCM retrofit. The developed model captures the physics of the phase change processes to predict the transient heat absorption and rejection processes.