CLRMLI is a novel high performance thermal insulation offering dramatically better thermal performance than SOFI both in-air and in-space. CLRMLI could be a good SOFI replacement for launch vehicle platforms, such as SLS, where it could help solve cryogenic propellant boiloff concerns. SLS is baselining using SOFI at 1.2", nearly double the usual thickness, to reduce boiloff. CLRMLI, with a measured heat flux of 46 W/m2 in-air and 11 W/m2, offers much lower heat leak than SOFI (289 W/m2). Boeing has indicated strong interest in CLRMLI (and the companion VCMLI concept), and will support this Phase II work with engineering support. CLRMLI could benefit NASA for LH2 storage for long duration nuclear thermal propelled vehicles for deep space exploration, as well as cryogenic propellant storage for conventional LH2/LOX chemical propulsion systems. NASA's Technology Roadmaps call "Zero Boil Off storage of cryogenic propellants for long duration missions" and "Nuclear Thermal Propulsion components and systems" the #2 and #7 ranked technical challenge for future NASA missions. CLRMLI could provide 92% lower heat flux than current SOFI insulation for in-air use and 97% lower heat flux in-space. CLRMLI might be a preferred thermal insulation for future NASA mission use, with a combination of high thermal performance, good structural strength, operable in both in-air and in-space environments, and it can be engineered for specific mission requirements.
Several aerospace prime contractors have interest in Quest/Ball IMLI and related insulation systems. CLRMLI could significantly improve launch vehicle insulation, reduce cryopropellant boiloff and increase mission capabilities. High performance CLRMLI system can replace SOFI in cryogenic upper stages such as AC, ACES and SLS. CLRMLI is ideal insulation for LH2 powered aircraft such as Boeing's Phantom Eye, and for LNG fueled aircraft. Advances in thermal insulation developed for space cryogenics thermal control have relevance to terrestrial industrial applications. Reducing thermal conductivity and heat leak could have significant impact on Earth-based heating and cooling industrial processes and needs, for green energy and high energy efficiency. IMLI and derivatives might be able to provide improved thermal insulation for storage and preservation of cryogens for a variety of industrial uses. LNG tanks could benefit from improved thermal insulation, and CLRMLI might benefit LH2 storage for hydrogen fueled aircraft and ground vehicles.