MISSE 2 PEACE Polymers Experiment Atomic Oxygen Erosion Yield Error AnalysisAtomic oxygen erosion of polymers in low Earth orbit (LEO) poses a serious threat to spacecraft performance and durability. To address this, 40 different polymer samples and a sample of pyrolytic graphite, collectively called the PEACE (Polymer Erosion and Contamination Experiment) Polymers, were exposed to the LEO space environment on the exterior of the International Space Station (ISS) for nearly 4 years as part of the Materials International Space Station Experiment 1 & 2 (MISSE 1 & 2). The purpose of the PEACE Polymers experiment was to obtain accurate mass loss measurements in space to combine with ground measurements in order to accurately calculate the atomic oxygen erosion yields of a wide variety of polymeric materials exposed to the LEO space environment for a long period of time. Error calculations were performed in order to determine the accuracy of the mass measurements and therefore of the erosion yield values. The standard deviation, or error, of each factor was incorporated into the fractional uncertainty of the erosion yield for each of three different situations, depending on the post-flight weighing procedure. The resulting error calculations showed the erosion yield values to be very accurate, with an average error of 3.30 percent.
McCarthy, Catherine E. (Hathaway Brown School Shaker Heights, OH, United States)
Banks, Bruce A. (Alphaport, Inc. Cleveland, OH, United States)
deGroh, Kim, K. (NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)