Questions tagged [helium]

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Falcon 9 Stage-1 Helium Capacity

Is it known roughly how much helium a Falcon 9 stage 1 carries for leg deployment? Any educated guesses as to what the volume or mass might be? I don't imagine there are pictures of the stage-1 helium ...
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Falcon 9 Legs: helium just for pushers or also for telescopic cylinders?

For the longest time I assumed the Falcon 9 legs use pressurized helium to extend. But gravity by itself would cause them to extend---so long as you first kick them out from their stowed position. For ...
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Falcon 9: Landing leg helium pressure?

So it seems the Falcon 9 landing legs are powered by a helium precharge. Does anyone know the pressure of that precharge? If no numbers for Falcon 9, is there at least a reasonable range of what the ...
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Falcon 9 legs: precharged helium?

I've read the Falcon 9 uses helium pneumatics to extend its legs. The separation pushers are also helium pneumatics and I believe those are precharged so no pumps required. Are the leg cylinders ...
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How did the Space telescopes lose their coolant helium?

How did the Planck satellite lose its helium? Spitzer, Herschel had the same problem. How was it consumed? How come other satellites, like Hubble, don't have this problem? And basic logic says that ...
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Why does the Falcon 9 use turbopumps as well as helium pressurisation system?

Falcon 9 first stage use turbopumps as well as helium pressurisation system. Isn't the turbopumps enough to pump in the propellants to the combustion chamber?
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In what ways is helium used on modern launch vehicles?

Helium is a fairly rare material and does not remain in the atmosphere. I'd like to know the uses of helium on modern launch systems? Do most launch vehicles use helium in several different ways, or ...
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Is it correct that the Saturn V RP1 tank was pressurized by high pressure helium and the LOX tanks were pressurised by oxygen?

I understand from many sites that in the first stage of the Saturn V, the RP1 tank was pressurized by high pressure Helium tanks, but the LOX tanks were pressurized using gaseous oxygen. Is this ...
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785 views

Have light gases like hydrogen or helium been explored for ion propulsion?

This answer and discussion in comments below this answer mention that for an ion of mass $m$ and charge $q$ accelerated by a voltage $V$ the momentum it receives (impulse) is $$p = \sqrt{2mqV} = \...
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Role of ground-supplied helium in S-1C stage

In this answer, the attached quote, says that ground-supplied helium was made to bubble up through LOX lines which mixed it and kept it from boiling and geysering. What exactly this means? By ground ...
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What is the use of a helium tank in this very early space suit design?

The answer to this question included this image from a book by Wernher von Braun he wrote in 1960. This space suit design misses a micro meteroite protection as well as liquid cooling to remove ...
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Why did the Herschel Space Telescope need helium coolant?

Inspired by answering this question The Wikipedia entry says this On 29 April 2013, ESA announced that Herschel's supply of liquid helium, used to cool the instruments and detectors on board, had ...
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Is helium used to power the Falcon 9 grid fins?

Is helium used as a hydraulic fluid to power the grid fins? Or for engine gimbaling? What are the pros and cons of using helium instead of hydraulic fluids?
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Can carbon dioxide be distilled from a Helium/Oxygen atmosphere by using natural refrigeration?

A simple air compressor compress carbon dioxide/water saturated helium/oxygen air in a tank to liquefy water from the air by pressure. Abstract the water, then refrigerate the carbon dioxide/helium/...
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786 views

Other than He and N as pressurizing gases

To pressurize the liquid propellant tanks Helium is most widely used and after that Nitrogen. Helium is quite costly and Nitrogen is economic but it messes with the O/F ratio of the engine (ref). So, ...
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Pressurization line (Helium to LOX tank line) chilling while pressurizing LOX tank

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 ...
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Is it feasible to take liquid Helium in a Pressure Fed System?

Can liquid Helium be flowed through a heat exhanger to increase its temperature and pressure which will further pressurize fuel-oxidizer tanks.
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What is the advantage of using Helium over Nitrogen when used for pressurising LOx?

In this Twitter post of the plumbing line diagram(left half) by LauncherSpace, one can notice that Helium is used for pressurising LOx while Nitrogen is used for pressurising Kerosene. Why the ...
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Why is heated Helium used for tank pressurisation in Falcon 1?

Here in Falcon 1 user guide, in table 2-1 in page 8, heated Helium is mentioned as used for tank pressurisation. What will be the temperature of such He and why is heated He used?
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High pressure Helium tanks for the Vega balloon experiments

Is there any available (scientific) information on the properties of the high pressure Helium storage tanks, used for the Vega balloon experiments on Venus? Information on how big pressure gas they ...
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How did the Apollo Lunar Module ascent engine prevent gas bubbling through fuel?

As I understand it, in order to keep the lunar module ascent engine simple, instead of fuel and oxidant pumps, tanks of helium at pressure were used. This pressure was used to force the fuel and ...
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What about recycling the helium used for sub-cooling the LOX in the tank of a rocket before launch?

Helium is a rare and expensive noble gas. When it is loaded into a rocket to be used after launch, it is not possible to recycle it. But the helium used for sub-cooling the LOX before launch (see ...
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Why does the Falcon 9 require a helium pressurization system?

The Space Shuttle was designed in the seventies and did not require a helium pressurization system. Why does the Falcon 9 require one? What are the advantages/disadvantages?
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Does the Falcon Heavy also use a helium system?

The Falcon 9 uses a helium system to pressurize the tanks. Does the Heavy first stage also use helium? How big would the explosion be in case of a failure assuming the boosters would go too?
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How does tank pressurization work?

I know the basic premise of tank pressurization. A inert gas (usually Helium) is kept in small tanks in or around the large propellant tanks, and when propellant is burned the helium fills the empty ...
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Why Use Helium?

I apologize in advance if this question has already been asked and answered elsewhere, but why do RP-1/LOX rocket systems use helium for propellant tank pressurization? I understand the fact that O2 ...
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454 views

Liquid Helium (4.2K) sealed, then raised to sub-LOX temperature (~70K) - what is the new pressure?

In this question there is discussion of the large differences in temperature between liquid helium-4, subcooled liquid oxygen (sub-LOX) and cold kerosene (RP-1). Approximate temperatures are 4.2K, ~...
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598 views

Cassini's main engines' burns “can be blow-down or pressurized (with Helium)” - why?

I just read that when Cassini makes it's first close pass of Saturn's F-ring on December 4, it will be the 183rd time the engine fires. I googled Cassini's engine and found this site which has a cool ...
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Does SpaceX recover and reuse tank pressurization helium?

Given that SpaceX have successfully landed several Falcon 9 boosters and that these vehicles use helium pressure-fed engines, when these vehicles land, their propellant tanks will presumably be mostly ...
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678 views

Is the “cryogenic helium” system in recent discussions actually LHe for cryopumping?

I am wondering if the "cryogenic helium" system discussed in articles about the 1-Sept-2016 SpaceX Falcon 9 anomaly (see this answer for a good summary to date) is not actually related to the high ...
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Is this explanation for the SpaceX 1-Sept-2016 anomaly plausible?

Question: Is this explanation for the SpaceX 1-Sept-2016 anomaly plausible? Or most of it at least (sans LHe)? In the recent New Atlas article SpaceX fingers helium as cause of Falcon 9 rocket ...
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What is the purpose of the helium and argon gas supplies on ISS?

I finally figured out that the nitrogen gas is used for the MELFI (minus eighty freezers). I can't figure out what the argon would be used for, though I can see how helium might be useful for ...
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How much helium and nitrogen are used in SpaceX's Falcon 9?

How much helium and nitrogen are used on SpaceX's Falcon 9?
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Why do pressure-fed systems have to be pressurized with helium or nitrogen?

This is something I just don't understand. The way I see it, propellant can be pressurized all on its own in the tank. Just pump a lot of the stuff in there and make sure the tank is strong enough. ...
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How feasible is it to harvest isotopes of Helium or Hydrogen from the gas giants?

The gas giants in our solar system have abundant quantities of Helium and Hydrogen. Is it possible to harvest these resources there? Does NASA have any plans to build some permanent base in space for ...