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Effect of Simulant Type on the Absorptance and Emittance of Dusted Thermal Control Surfaces in a Simulated Lunar EnvironmentDuring the Apollo program the effects of lunar dust on thermal control surfaces was found to be more significant than anticipated, with several systems overheating due to deposition of dust on them. In an effort to reduce risk to future missions, a series of tests has been initiated to characterize the effects of dust on these surfaces, and then to develop technologies to mitigate that risk. Given the variations in albedo across the lunar surface, one variable that may be important is the darkness of the lunar dust, and this study was undertaken to address that concern. Three thermal control surfaces, AZ-93 white paint and AgFEP and AlFEP second surface mirrors were dusted with three different lunar dust simulants in a simulated lunar environment, and their integrated solar absorptance ( ) and thermal emittance ( ) values determined experimentally. The three simulants included JSC-1AF, a darker mare simulant, NU-LHT-1D, a light highlands simulant, and 1:1 mixture of the two. The response of AZ-93 was found to be slightly more pronounced than that of AgFEP. The increased with fractional dust coverage in both types of samples by a factor of 1.7 to 3.3, depending on the type of thermal control surface and the type of dust. The of the AZ-93 decreased by about 10 percent when fully covered by dust, while that of AgFEP increased by about 10 percent. It was found that / varied by more than a factor of two depending on the thermal control surface and the darkness of the dust. Given that the darkest simulant used in this study may be lighter than the darkest dust that could be encountered on the lunar surface, it becomes apparent that the performance degradation of thermal control surfaces due to dust on the Moon will be strongly dependent on the and of the dust in the specific locality
Document ID
Document Type
Technical Memorandum (TM)
Gaier, James R. (NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Date Acquired
August 25, 2013
Publication Date
August 1, 2010
Subject Category
Lunar and Planetary Science and Exploration
Report/Patent Number
AIAA Paper 2010-6111
Meeting Information
40th International Conference on Environmental Systems(Barcelona)
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS WBS 119103.04.05.18
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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