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Handling heat in nano-sats

The European Space Agency (ESA) has awarded SSTL with a Micro Heat Management System Study to identify innovative techniques to manage heat in nano/micro satellites (defined as having a volume smaller than 400×400×400 mm). The objective is to find recommendations on low cost heat management systems that can be used in a modular fashion. NEOMEx is a programme for development of a new nano-satellite bus through the use of a system of microsystems such as the Micro Heat Management System. The aim of NEOMEx is to provide a low cost, low mass and readily adaptable spacecraft system as a solution to numerous mission types. An ESA study known as NanoSat is a potential mission concept example, as an application of a modular and configurable nano spacecraft. Heat generated by all electronic devices and circuitry must be dispersed and ultimately radiated to Space in order to avoid overheating and to prevent premature failure in satellites and space systems. With heat management systems taking up volume, mass and power, there is a particular challenge in finding systems for dispersing heat in nano- and micro-satellites because their designs are dependent on using as little of these resources as possible. There is an increased interest in nano satellites from ESA and other organisations, as they offer more economical missions with ever increasing capabilities, making it even more important to find useful solutions with a small size in mind. A lot of time, and therefore money, is usually spent designing thermal control systems that are used for just one particular satellite system. The SSTL led Heat Management System Study will for 15 months look at different innovative techniques to find the most effective design that can be reused repeatedly within ESA’s NEOMEx and similar programs.





03 May 20110 Comments1 Comment

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