An Examination of Radiation Induced Tensile Failure of Stressed and Unstressed Polymer Films Flown on MISSE-6Thin film polymers are used in many spacecraft applications for thermal control (multilayer insulation and sunshields), as lightweight structural members (solar array blankets, inflatable/deployable structures) and have been proposed for propulsion (solar sails). Polymers in these applications are often under a tensile load and are directly exposed to the space environment, therefore it is important to understand the effect of stress in combination with the environment on the durability of these polymer films. The purpose of the Polymer Film Tensile Experiment, flown as part of Materials International Space Station Experiment 6 (MISSE 6), was to expose a variety of polymer films to the low Earth orbital environment under both relaxed and tension conditions. This paper describes the results of post flight tensile testing of these samples.
Miller, Sharon K. (NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Sechkar, Edward A. (ZIN Technologies, Inc. Brook Park, OH, United States)