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Simulated Solar Flare X-Ray and Thermal Cycling Durability Evaluation of Hubble Space Telescope Thermal Control Candidate Replacement MaterialsDuring the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) second servicing mission (SM2), astronauts noticed that the multilayer insulation (MLI) covering the telescope was damaged. Large pieces of the outer layer of MLI (aluminized Teflon fluorinated ethylene propylene (Al-FEP)) were torn in several locations around the telescope. A piece of curled up Al-FEP was retrieved by the astronauts and was found to be severely embrittled, as witnessed by ground testing. Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) organized a HST MLI Failure Review Board (FRB) to determine the damage mechanism of FEP in the HST environment, and to recommend replacement insulation material to be installed on HST during the third servicing mission (SM3) in 1999. Candidate thermal control replacement materials were chosen by the FRB and tested for environmental durability under various exposures and durations. This paper describes durability testing of candidate materials which were exposed to charged particle radiation, simulated solar flare x-ray radiation and thermal cycling under load. Samples were evaluated for changes in solar absorptance and tear resistance. Descriptions of environmental exposures and durability evaluations of these materials are presented.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
deGroh, Kim K.
(NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH United States)
Banks, Bruce A.
(NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH United States)
Sechkar, Edward A.
(NYMA, Inc. Brook Park, OH United States)
Scheiman, David A.
(NYMA, Inc. Brook Park, OH United States)
Date Acquired
September 6, 2013
Publication Date
December 1, 1998
Subject Category
Nonmetallic Materials
Report/Patent Number
NAS 1.15:207426
Meeting Information
Protection of Materials and Structures from the LEO Space Environment(Toronto)
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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