White Paper: Defense

Testing Considerations for Space Copper-Water Heat Pipes

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On-board processing is becoming a vital part of satellite systems engineering. This results in more high-power components and more localized waste heat than ever before. A common device-level cooling solution for terrestrial settings is the copper-water heat pipe. By using two-phase heat transport, water-based heat pipes can manage high heat fluxes and spread heat extremely efficiently. Although ammonia heat pipes have been used in satellite architectures for decades, water heat pipes are often avoided because of the fluid’s expansion when freezing. This is a challenge, but the thermal benefits that water provides in this critical operating temperature region are too good to ignore. ACT has worked with industry partners for several years to develop Space Copper-Water Heat Pipes (SCWHPs) that can safely and reliably operate through all the extremes a space environment offers. Read this whitepaper on the testing and operational requirements that have been achieved using SCWHPs!

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