The Mars Helicopter will be a technology demonstration conducted during the Mars 2020 mission. The primary mission objective is to achieve several 90-second flights and capture visible light images via forward and nadir mounted cameras. These flights could possibly provide reconnaissance data for sampling site selection for other Mars surface missions. The helicopter is powered by a solar array, which stores energy in secondary batteries for flight operations, imaging, communications, and survival heating.
Loop heat pipes (LHPs) are used in multiple terrestrial and space applications. Transient analysis of conventional and advanced loop heat pipes with complex radiators under varying conditions where the heat load and the effective sink temperature change in time can be best accomplished using Thermal Desktop™.
Advances in computer technologies and manufacturing processes allow creation of highly sophisticated components in compact platform. For example, a small scale satellite, such as the CubeSat, can now be used for scientific research in space rather than big scale project like the International Space Station (ISS). Recently a team of undergraduate and graduate students at SJSU has the opportunity to collaborate on designing and building a miniature size CubeSat with the dimension of 10x10x10 cm.
The NASA-standard thermohydraulic analyzer, SINDA/ FLUINT, has been used to model various aspects of loop heat pipe (LHP) operation for more than 12 years. Indeed, this code has many features that were specifically designed for just such specialized tasks, and is unique in this respect.
Modeling to predict the condition of cryogenic propellants in an upper stage of a launch vehicle is necessary for mission planning and successful execution. Traditionally, this effort was performed using custom, in-house proprietary codes, limiting accessibility and application. Phenomena responsible for influencing the thermodynamic state of the propellant have been characterized as distinct events whose sequence defines a mission. These events include thermal stratification, passive thermal control roll (rotation), slosh, and engine firing.