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Center Innovation Fund: KSC CIF

Nanocoatings for Wicking of Low-Viscosity Cryogens (CTM)

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

The goal of this project is to investigate and develop smart, switchable materials systems for use in thermal management systems, including the evaluation of wicking nanocoatings for use in the transport and storage of cryogens. The project anticipates advancing the state of the art in space propulsion systems by development of the key enabling wicking technology for cryogenic propellant management devices. 

Advances continue to be made in areas of novel materials and mechanical refrigeration equipment for the thermal management of cryogens in applications from space transportation to medical imaging. The investigation of novel materials/systems in combination with mechanical refrigeration equipment for use in thermal management systems is the focus of this project. Materials include coatings and other surface finishes while the refrigeration may be active (with cryocoolers), passive (cryogen only), or a combination.

Another important aspect of efficient thermal management is the storage and transport of cryogenic fluids such as liquid hydrogen and liquid helium. These two low-viscosity cryogens are the main challenge and prime target for future applications.

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Primary U.S. Work Locations and Key Partners

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Project Duration

Technology Maturity (TRL)

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