Thermal Vacuum Testing of the Capillary Pumped Loop Flight Experiment
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.