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Integrated Power Source GrantTraditional spacecraft power systems incorporate a solar array energy source, an energy storage element (battery), and battery charge control and bus voltage regulation electronics to provide continuous electrical power for spacecraft systems and instruments. Dedicated power conditioning components provide limited fault isolation between systems and instruments, while a centralized power-switching unit provides spacecraft load control. Battery undervoltage conditions are detected by the spacecraft processor, which removes fault conditions and non-critical loads before permanent battery damage can occur. Cost effective operation of a micro-sat constellation requires a fault tolerant spacecraft architecture that minimizes on-orbit operational costs by permitting autonomous reconfiguration in response to unexpected fault conditions. A new micro-sat power system architecture that enhances spacecraft fault tolerance and improves power system survivability by continuously managing the battery charge and discharge processes on a cell-by-cell basis has been developed. This architecture is based on the Integrated Power Source (US patent 5644207), which integrates dual junction solar cells, Lithium Ion battery cells, and processor based charge control electronics into a structural panel that can be deployed or used to form a portion of the outer shell of a micro-spacecraft. The first generation Integrated Power Source is configured as a one inch thick panel in which prismatic Lithium Ion battery cells are arranged in a 3x7 matrix (26VDC) and a 3x1 matrix (3.7VDC) to provide the required output voltages and load currents. A multi-layer structure holds the battery cells, as well as the thermal insulators that are necessary to protect the Lithium Ion battery cells from the extreme temperatures of the solar cell layer. Independent thermal radiators, located on the back of the panel, are dedicated to the solar cell array, the electronics, and the battery cell array. In deployed panel applications, these radiators maintain the battery cells in an appropriate operational temperature range.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Langley Research Center
Document Type
Contractor or Grantee Report
Date Acquired
August 20, 2013
Publication Date
October 31, 2001
Subject Category
Spacecraft Propulsion And Power
Report/Patent Number
Funding Number(s)
CONTRACT_GRANT: CUFS-X466-Y00-2441-2500
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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