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How is the heat generated by the MMRTG distributed to the operational parts of Perseverance prior to deployment?

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  • $\begingroup$ Different question but related: Now that Perseverance is “hot” (RTG in place) and before it gets to deep space, how will it stay cool? $\endgroup$ – uhoh Mar 7 at 0:29
  • $\begingroup$ "prior to deployment" is in your title, so I've copied it to the body of your question as well. $\endgroup$ – uhoh Mar 7 at 0:30
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    $\begingroup$ If I had seen your question of 7 months ago and the informative answers I would have, at least, rephrased my question $\endgroup$ – giles tester Mar 7 at 5:57
  • $\begingroup$ The ultimate goal is the generation of good answers to op-topic questions and to guide future readers to those answers and to learn interesting things in the process :-) $\endgroup$ – uhoh Mar 7 at 6:00
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    $\begingroup$ new here and still learning the etiquette and ways to search for previously asked questions $\endgroup$ – giles tester Mar 7 at 6:10
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After lots of searching I can partially answer my own question: The MMRTG produces a constant 2 kW of heat about 5% of which is converted into electrical power to charge the batteries, some of the excess heat is used via heat exchangers to heat up a CFC fluid which is pumped throughout the rover's body, the gold pipes on the MMRTG fins are part of this heat exchange system.

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  • $\begingroup$ I think (but can not find a source yet) that there is even a loop of "hot water plumbing" that goes to the spacecraft itself, and those lines have to be disconnected before separation. So I've just asked Are there fluid disconnects that sever just before Curiosity and Perseverance separate? $\endgroup$ – uhoh Mar 7 at 1:00
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    $\begingroup$ if you go back to the photo taken by Perseverance of its own top deck shortly after landing you can see just to the right of the umbilical cutter a group of severed cables and 2 or 3 severed pipes/tubes, I suspect these tubes carried the heated fluid from the MMRTG up to skycrane to keep it operationally warm and were severed just before separation $\endgroup$ – giles tester Mar 7 at 6:05
  • $\begingroup$ Oh please consider adding that (along with the photo) as another answer to my question; that's exactly the "disconnect" I'm interested in! $\endgroup$ – uhoh Mar 7 at 6:23

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