The Effect of Low Earth Orbit Atomic Oxygen Exposure on Phenylphosphine Oxide-Containing Polymers
- Connell, John W.
- Physical Description:
- 1 electronic document
- Restrictions on Access:
- Unclassified, Unlimited, Publicly available.
- Thin films of phenylphosphine oxide-containing polymers were exposed to low Earth orbit aboard a space shuttle flight (STS-85) as part of flight experiment designated Evaluation of Space Environment and Effects on Materials (ESEM). This flight experiment was a cooperative effort between the NASA Langley Research Center (LaRC) and the National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA). The thin film samples described herein were part of an atomic oxygen exposure experiment (AOE) and were exposed to primarily atomic oxygen (~1 X 1019 atoms/cm2). The thin film samples consisted of three phosphine oxide containing polymers (arylene ether, benzimidazole and imide). Based on post-flight analyses using atomic force microscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and weight loss data, it was found that atomic oxygen exposure of these materials efficiently produces a phosphate layer at the surface of the samples. This layer provides a barrier towards further attack by AO. Consequently, these materials do not exhibit linear erosion rates which is in contrast with most organic polymers. Qualitatively, the results obtained from these analyses compare favorably with those obtained from samples exposed to atomic oxygen and or oxygen plasma in ground based exposure experiments. The results of the low Earth orbit atomic oxygen exposure on these materials will be compared with those of ground based exposure to AO.
- NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) Collection.
- Document ID: 20040086991.
- No Copyright.
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