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- White thermal control coatings capable of long term performance are needed for Fission Surface Power (FSP) where heat from a nuclear reactor placed on the surface of the Moon must be rejected to the environment. The threats to thermal control coating durability on the lunar surface are electrons, protons, and ultraviolet radiation. The anticipated damage to the coating is a gradual darkening over time. The increase in solar absorptance would, in essence, add a cyclic heat load to the radiator. The greater the darkening, the greater the added heat load. The cyclic heat load could ultimately impart a cyclic influence on FSP system performance. No significant change in emittance is anticipated. Optical properties degradation data were found in the open literature for the Z-93 series of thermal control paints. Additional optical properties degradation data were found from the Lunar Orbiter V mission, the Optical Properties Monitor, and the Materials International Space Station Experiment. Anticipated end-of-life thermal control coating performance for a FSP installation is postulated. With the FSP installation located away from landing and launching areas, and out of line-of-sight, lunar dust from human activity may not be a threat. The benefits of investing in next generation thermal control paint chemistry are explored.
- NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) Collection.
- Document ID: 20080018585.
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