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Oxygen Compatibility Testing of Composite MaterialsThe development of polymer composite liquid oxygen LO2 tanks is a critical step in creating the next generation of launch vehicles. Future launch vehicles need to minimize the gross liftoff weight (GLOW), which is possible due to the 25%-40% reduction in weight that composite materials could provide over current aluminum technology. Although a composite LO2 tank makes these weight savings feasible, composite materials have not historically been viewed as "LO2 compatible." To be considered LO2 compatible, materials must be selected that will resist any type of detrimental, combustible reaction when exposed to usage environments. This is traditionally evaluated using a standard set of tests. However, materials that do not pass the standard tests can be shown to be safe for a particular application. This paper documents the approach and results of a joint NASA/Lockheed Martin program to select and verify LO2 compatible composite materials for liquid oxygen fuel tanks. The test approach developed included tests such as mechanical impact, particle impact, puncture, electrostatic discharge, friction, and pyrotechnic shock. These tests showed that composite liquid oxygen tanks are indeed feasible for future launch vehicles.
Document ID
20010020209
Document Type
Conference Paper
Authors
Graf, Neil A. (Lockheed Martin Michoud Space Systems New Orleans, LA United States)
Hudgins, Richard J. (Lockheed Martin Michoud Space Systems New Orleans, LA United States)
McBain, Michael (Lockheed Martin Michoud Space Systems New Orleans, LA United States)
Date Acquired
September 7, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2000
Subject Category
Composite Materials
Funding Number(s)
CONTRACT_GRANT: NCC8-115
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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