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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

Lightweight Flexible Thermal Energy Management Panels for CubeSats

Completed Technology Project

Project Description

Lightweight Flexible Thermal Energy Management Panels for CubeSats, Phase I
In response to significant gaps in advanced thermal control systems onboard CubeSats and SmallSats, and building off of the successful development of space-based FlexCoolTM two-phase thermal straps for CubeSats by its affiliated company i2C Solutions, Roccor proposes to develop a comprehensive thermal management component by adding a phase change material (PCM) thermal energy storage (TES) layer to the thin, flexible, high conductivity FlexCool thermal strap technology. The resulting Flexible Thermal Energy Management, (FlexTherm) product is a single thin flexible component that integrates easily into CubeSat geometries, operates reliably in vacuum, and efficiently serves thermal acquisition, transport, rejection and thermal energy storage functions with a minimum size and volume. To that end, the main objective of the proposed Phase I program is to demonstrate the technical feasibility of integrating PCMs with FlexCool, a thin, flat, flexible heat pipe technology whose feasibility was previously demonstrated for operation in the space environment. The PCM layer will include paraffin waxes as the matrix material inside a metal casing with an internal metal woven mesh. The internal mesh acts as a mechanical load bearing layer, as well as thermal conductivity enhancement material to spread heat into the TES materia More »

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