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Questions tagged [heat]

Questions about issues related to heat and temperature, and situations where heat (too much or too little) is the primary issue. Examples include heat management in spacecraft and heat used for power generation using the flow of thermal energy from a source to a sink.

23
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2answers
3k views

Why not increase contact surface when reentering the atmosphere?

If a craft were to increase the surface area where contact is made with air during reentry, I imagine the heat quantity per area unit would decrease, making the use of (heavy) heat shields less of a ...
3
votes
1answer
108 views

Launch pads flame deflectors

I was interested in knowing if all launch pads possess a flame deflector. I'm inclined to say yes, as the structure seems vital for a safe launch. Wanted to make sure, though, if there could be a case ...
2
votes
1answer
54 views

Heat balance of the ISS: breakdown?

Is there available breakdown of the heat balance of the International Space Station? In particular: How much heat is produced? by direct warming by sun by warming of solar panels (heat for the ...
1
vote
1answer
65 views

Selection crieteria for coolant media on spaceships

What is the Selection criteria for coolant media on spaceships? I have read that ammonia as well as water glycol have been used. These two have very diverse properties. So what makes both of them ...
4
votes
1answer
115 views

Could a spacecraft produce lift using sublimating material?

Following this question, could a spacecraft approaching upper atmosphere from very low circular Earth orbit, produce lift to soar propulsively, bleeding speed at constant apoapsis, by sublimating ...
6
votes
1answer
126 views

How much delta-v is lost to heat of exhaust?

It occurred to me that all of the kinetic energy not going exactly in the opposite direction of a spacecraft is wasted! Since heat is essentially kinetic "noise" in objects, I wondered how much more ...
4
votes
0answers
65 views

Has the monthly average skin temp of the ISS increased during its years in orbit?

Is there a source of monthly average sun-side maximum temperatures during its (ISS) years in orbit?
5
votes
1answer
353 views

Why is Adiabatic wall temperature taken as the driving temperature in rocket engines?

Going by the definition of convective heat transfer coefficient from Wikipedia (which I have started to doubt; reason follows): $h=\frac{q}{\Delta T}$, where the $\Delta T$ is taken as the difference ...
1
vote
2answers
255 views

Orbital reentry glider with no heat shield

Let's assume a reentry craft designed to not use heat protection like Soyuz or the Space Shuttle, and budget is not an issue. The Concorde max surface temperature was 400 K, so let's use this as a max ...
2
votes
1answer
83 views

What advances are there in heat-resistant materials for engines?

As one of the difficulties in engine design is to prevent it from melting, one can expect research to be conducted on what materials to use for thrust chamber and nozzle. Many engines seem to use ...
6
votes
1answer
305 views

Parker Solar probe's heat survival - Heat vs Temperature

This is not about about heat shields, materials, coolant, etc. I am not quite not getting the science that explains the Heat Vs Temperature, which is how the Parker probe is going to survive the ...
2
votes
1answer
124 views

How are the Titan Transtage's tanks protected from its engine?

As a follow up to this answer which identifies the two pointed objects flanking the Titan Transtage's engine in an unusual configuration as its propellant tanks: How are these protected from the heat ...
4
votes
1answer
167 views

Generating power in zero-g

When generating electricity, energy is lost to friction in mechanical bearings (e.g. turbine or generator bearings) and as heat, through resistance in transmission wires. If you were generating ...
4
votes
1answer
210 views

SpaceX nose fairing heating during launch?

In watching the Space-X SES-12 launch last night, I noticed what looked like the nose fairing of the rocket glowing a bit a while after launch. This was most obvious in the video about T+1:30 to T+1:...
1
vote
1answer
164 views

Cooking in Space

Someone in the Worldbuilding SE asked How to Build a BBQ for the ISS. My first through was: Why not just stick it in a sealed container out in direct sunlight for a bit? It'll get plenty cooked ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Why doesn't the Tesla Roadster's windscreen crack or break in space?

The car is on the sun side of space as seen by the lens flare. This means that the car will absorb high amounts of radiation, heating the car up to well over 250 degrees Celsius . A car windscreen ...
6
votes
6answers
12k views

Why doesn't Tesla's Roadster melt in space?

Tesla's Roadster is somewhere above us taking sunlight directly part of the time, then very cold on the next half of the orbit. Or when it rolls, one side gets hot, the other is cold. Why don't the ...
0
votes
1answer
223 views

heat recovery thermodynamics in space

Let me try ask it this way. How efficient is current power generation thermodynamic cycles in space? Is it even used? My info is that most spacecraft use PV solar panels, is the heat turned to energy ...
5
votes
2answers
583 views

How does a thermal control system of a spacecraft basicaly work?

I'd like to know how a thermal control system of a spacecraft basically works. As the only possibility to get rid of the thermal heat is through radiation, I'd like to get a basic qualitative ...
7
votes
2answers
598 views

How are spacecraft engineered to prevent overheating?

Been reading about early space exploration again, especially Sputnik 2 (1957) and Venera 1 (1961). Both of these suffered from overheating. It strikes me that a metal object will easily "absorb" the ...
2
votes
1answer
135 views

Solar cell heating vs power draw

In a few questions ( Does the ISS need more heating or more cooling?, Why did Salyut 7 freeze over, while ISS requires massive cooling system? ) it is implied that the station inside heat budget is ...
4
votes
2answers
567 views

Why do some spacecraft have heat radiators? Why not repurpose the energy?

I would have thought that you would want to conserve as much energy as possible - or is energy/electricity not a problem?
4
votes
5answers
698 views

Dissipating large amounts of energy fast, in space

Currently, we have good methods of sustained, slow dissipation of energy through radiators. They take quite large area (and mass) per watt dissipated though. I know sublimators were used at least in ...
5
votes
1answer
270 views

Does it get cold in a container in space?

The image I have is that if we turn off heating in a space vehicle, the cold will be immense. However, I started figuring in terms of energy levels of particles (which is the temperature) and realized ...
5
votes
0answers
72 views

What instruments are necessary to measure/determine the process that generates Saturn's internal heat?

I am writing a paper about a possible mission to Saturn but I am a business and Spanish student and am quite ignorant when it comes to the engineering and science behind probes and their instruments; ...
3
votes
1answer
126 views

Do the size of rocky planets determine how hot they are inside?

As I recall, the main cause of the high temperatures inside e.g. the Earth is thermal heating due to the decay of radioisotopes. The thinking is that: Although small, the heat has nowhere to go, so ...
20
votes
1answer
1k views

What cooling improvements did the Venera missions make?

I've been reading about Russia's (former Soviet Union) Venera missions, and one thing about them that has impressed me is the incremental improvements the landers made in their lifespans before ...
7
votes
0answers
198 views

Convective heat transfer on rocket during ascent

I'm looking for a way to (very) roughly estimate the convective heat transfer onto a rocket hull during atmospheric ascent (ideally through different planetary atmospheres). While I'm comfortable with ...
3
votes
1answer
144 views

What are the requirements of a suborbital trajectory, to ensure that a small payload burns up?

How can one determine the required altitude/velocity/time from release required for a small spacecraft (1 to 10 kg) in a suborbital trajectory to ensure that it burns up as it re-enters the atmosphere?...
3
votes
1answer
330 views

Is the waste heat (sink) system dependent on whether the energy source is nuclear or solar?

A power plant in space causes waste heat which has to be removed from the plant. The need for large heat sinks, and their mass, kind of bogs down some of the advantages of big nuclear power in space. ...
4
votes
1answer
708 views

Mass and efficiency of heat radiators

Probably the only reasonable way how to get rid of waste heat in space is radiating the heat away. Most of the current satellites and probes probably do not produce much waste heat. However, assuming ...
45
votes
2answers
10k views

Why is gold used in space technology to protection from heat radiation?

AFAIK, NASA and others are using mainly gold to protect surface from heat radiation. But, as we can see with our own eyes, chrome or silver had probably a much better albedo, because they are white, ...
8
votes
1answer
273 views

How does Bigelow plan to handle heat rejection on the BA-330?

Bigelow Aerospace has two inflatables on orbit (Genesis I and Genesis II) with plans for attaching the BEAM module to the ISS. These are precursors to a full scale station, based on multiple (3?) BA-...