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Measuring Thermal Conductivity at LH2 TemperaturesFor many years, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) produced reference materials for materials testing. One such reference material was intended for use with a guarded hot plate apparatus designed to meet the requirements of ASTM C177-97, "Standard Test Method for Steady-State Heat Flux Measurements and Thermal Transmission Properties by Means of the Guarded-Hot-Plate Apparatus." This apparatus can be used to test materials in various gaseous environments from atmospheric pressure to a vacuum. It allows the thermal transmission properties of insulating materials to be measured from just above ambient temperature down to temperatures below liquid hydrogen. However, NIST did not generate data below 77 K temperature for the reference material in question. This paper describes a test method used at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) to optimize thermal conductivity measurements during the development of thermal protection systems. The test method extends the usability range of this reference material by generating data at temperatures lower than 77 K. Information provided by this test is discussed, as are the capabilities of the MSFC Hydrogen Test Facility, where advanced methods for materials testing are routinely developed and optimized in support of aerospace applications.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Selvidge, Shawn (NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Watwood, Michael C. (ERC, Inc. Huntsville, AL, United States)
Date Acquired
August 21, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2004
Subject Category
Fluid Mechanics and Thermodynamics
Meeting Information
45th AIAA/ASME/ASCE/AHS/ASC Structures, Structural Dynamics and Materials Conference(Palm Springs, CA)
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.