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DEVELOPMENT OF EMBEDDED THERMAL FUNCTIONS IN STRUCTURAL PARTS USING 3D PRINTING

ESA Open Invitation to Tender AO9085
Open Date: 15/08/2017
Closing Date: 16/10/2017 13:00:00

 

Status: ISSUED
Reference Nr.: 17.133.12
Prog. Ref.: GSTP Element 1 Dev
Budget Ref.: E/0904-611 - GSTP Element 1 Dev
Special Prov.: BE+DK+FR+DE
Tender Type: C
Price Range: > 500 KEURO
Products: Satellites & Probes / Structures / Optical bench structures / Cases, supporting rings, ...
Satellites & Probes / Thermal Control / Heat Transport / Other Capillary Driven Loops
Techology Domains: Structures / High Stability and High-Precision S/C Structures / Advanced Material Technologies for Stable Structures
Thermal / Heat Transport Technology / Capillary-Driven Loops
Materials and Processes / Materials Processes / Advanced Materials Manufacture
Establishment: ESTEC
Directorate: Directorate of Tech, Eng. & Quality
Department: Mechanical Engineering Department
Division: Structure and Mechanisms Division
Contract Officer: van Hilten, Linda
Industrial Policy Measure: N/A - Not apply
Last Update Date: 15/08/2017
Update Reason: Tender issue

Multifunctional structures have been developed in prior ESA activities focussing on the integration of electrical or thermal functions into the structure. These have included housings of electronic units built in lightweight CFRP with improved electrical and thermal conductivities, as well as multifunctional panels for spacecraft sidewalls with embedded electrical harness or heat pipes within the core. The thermal performances in those cases have not been optimal due to the limitations of manufacturing and assembly processes and the complexity of the inclusion of the heat pipes. Additive Manufacturing (AM) has enabled the production of complex elements with significant mass savings, a reduced number of parts and therefore less bonded orbolted junctions. This can play a positive role in the heat transport mechanisms. In particular, it can be foreseen to develop new sandwich core constructions based on lattice or foam-like geometries with improved conductance, embedding structural inserts without bonded joints, as well as the heat pipes themselves, all produced with AM in one single process. In this activity, the focus is on the thermal functions to be included in structural elements such as spacecraft sidewalls and payload/equipment support plates. Due to the AM capabilities, the integration of heatpipes within the sandwich core material can result in efficient two-phase structures, including as well their mechanical interfaces (joint to the sandwich skins and inserts). The current limitations of the size of AM parts (25 x 25 cm typically) may result in the need to limit the activity to the available dimensions and to consider joining methods based on Electron Beam welding or similar techniques. A significant size increase of the AM machines is expected in the coming years. The activity will consist of the followingtasks:- Selection of the configuration of structural panel with thermal function.- Selection of the aluminium alloys and AM process, including characterisation of mechanical (stiffness, strength, stability, damage tolerance, fatigue, leaktightness) and thermal properties (conductivity, heat capacity, Ammonia compatibility). Other properties such as corrosion resistance and weldability willalso be characterised.- Design and development of parts, including lattice/foam-like core with tailorable density.- Design and development of the two-phase structure (heat-pipe network)- Design and development of the combination of core, mechanical interfaces and two-phase structure with the skins.- Development and optimisation of the Additive Manufacturing route for the intended application.- Manufacturing and characterisation of a demonstration model for structure and thermal functions.

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