The thermal control of Tribolab: a materials experiment on board the International Space Station
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International Space Station (ISS)
Spacecraft Thermal control
Thermal Mathematical Model (TMM)
Flight thermal behaviour
Tribolab is a materials tribology experiment that was flown on board the International Space Station (ISS) from February 2008 to September 2009. The main objective of the experiment was the study of the behaviour of new solid lubricants (specifically, molybdenum disulphide MoS2 alloyed with tungsten carbide WC) under real space conditions. The thermal control of the instrument (techniques needed to ensure that the temperature range of the experiment components are adequate in all the mission possible scenarios), mainly based on passive thermal control with some active components, is explained in detail in this chapter. Two computational models devised for the design, as well as the different mission scenarios, foreseen temperatures and thermal flows, are also detailed. The verification and on earth qualification tests are also described, as well as the real thermal behaviour of the experiment when on board the International Space Station. Post-flight examination of Tribolab was also ...