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Technical Paper

Air Force Nickel Hydrogen Cell Low Earth Orbit Life Test-Update

There are currently 132 nickel hydrogen (NiH2) cells on test in a low earth orbit (LEO) regime at the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division. There are also 10 NiH2 cells in a special pulse test at the Aerospace Corporation. The testing, which is sponsored by the Air Force Phillips Laboratory, began in 1987. The majority of the cells have over four years of real time LEO cycles. The purpose of this paper is to provide a description of the NiH2 low earth orbit life test plan and to present the current status of cells in the test.
Technical Paper

Micromachined Chemical Sensors in Space: Results from the MNT Testbed on STS-93

We have tested a suite of micromachined chemical sensors on STS-93. This experiment is one of several incorporated in the overall Micro/Nano Technology (MNT) Testbed developed at The Aerospace Corporation. The sensors used in this experiment include: (1) a micromachined interferometer for carbon dioxide (CO2) detection, (2) a palladium thin-film sensor for hydrogen (H2), (3) a micromachined, micro hot plate sensor for carbon monoxide (CO), (4) a micromachined strain gauge pressure sensor, and (5) networked digital thermometers. A gas dosing system to test the sensors in flight was also included. The experimental design and flight results are presented and discussed.