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I have read that in rockets and launch vehicles Helium is used for the pressurization of propellant tanks.

What temperature Helium is stored at?

If Helium is stored at room temperature then while pressurizing does the pressurizing line is chilled through some mechanism so that the propellant tanks does not get affected?

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  • $\begingroup$ The tanks for gaseous Helium were mounted within the LOX tank sometimes. No chilling was necessary then and more Helium may be loaded at the same maximum pressure. $\endgroup$ – Uwe Nov 3 '18 at 15:47
  • $\begingroup$ @Uwe, so that means that at the time of filling we will be chilling the complete tank along with the helium tank inside? $\endgroup$ – Amar Nov 3 '18 at 15:50
  • $\begingroup$ I don't know the order of Helium and LOX loading but I think Helium was loaded before LOX. After chilling Helium may be toped off. $\endgroup$ – Uwe Nov 3 '18 at 16:11
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    $\begingroup$ On shuttle the helium tanks weren't inside the prop tanks and they got hot during pressurizing. $\endgroup$ – Organic Marble Nov 3 '18 at 20:53
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    $\begingroup$ @Amar Yes one of the trade off. Carry a lot ot He Vs carry little extra propellant. If time permits, I will try to add the calculations. $\endgroup$ – karthikeyan Nov 5 '18 at 6:08
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does the pressurizing line is chilled through some mechanism so that the propellant tanks does not get affected?

Think about what we are trying to accomplish: pressurization of the propellant tanks. Propellants like oxygen or hydrogen are usually stored in a cold liquid form. If your pressurization gas (heated helium in the case of the Saturn V's F-1 engines or SpaceX's Merlin engines) carried enough BTUs to vaporize a significant quantity of the propellant, that would be a good thing, you could use less helium and get the same pressurization effect.

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  • $\begingroup$ But helium is saved and propellant is lost from liquid to gas. Helium gas is lighter than oxygen gas, so using helium saves mass. $\endgroup$ – Uwe Aug 25 at 16:53

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