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Redesign and characterization of a CTE-based thermal switch and launch lock for space applications

H.H. van Loo (2016) Redesign and characterization of a CTE-based thermal switch and launch lock for space applications. Bachelor's Thesis, Applied Physics.

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In this bachelor research an earlier proposed design for a CTE-based heat switch /launch-lock is characterized and redesigned to properly test its capabilities. In earlier research the design was only made but never tested properly. The goal is to combine the properties of a thermal switch, i.e. the switching between a high and low thermal conductance on a certain temperature, with the properties of a launch lock, i.e. the locking of a sensor during the launch of a satellite and releasing once in orbit. Furthermore it is also important that the device is very reliable, which is why it is based on the effect of thermal expansion/contraction. In this research the thermal conductance, mechanical properties and release properties are tested. An ON-state conductance of > 0:5W=K and an OFF-state conductance of < 5:0 103W=K are achieved. Furthermore as a launch lock, the device is able to lock a sensor of 0.4kg with maximum vibrations of 40g, however vibration test should still conclude whether this holds upon longer exposure to cyclic loads. Also different configurations showed release temperatures, in the range of 130K to 220K, to be in good agreement with calculated values. This makes it easy to alter the device to release on different temperatures. More research should be done to check whether this device is suitable for real life space applications, however the measurements show a good potential and enough possibilities to further improve this design.

Item Type: Thesis (Bachelor's Thesis)
Degree programme: Applied Physics
Thesis type: Bachelor's Thesis
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 08:30
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 08:30

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