Research Papers

Near-Field Radiative Heat Exchange Analysis of a Spacecraft Waste Heat Converter Design

[+] Author and Article Information
Laurie Y. Carrillo

Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science,  Rice University, MS-321, P.O. Box 1892,Houston, TX 77251lycarr@alumni.rice.edu

Yildiz Bayazitoglu1

Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science,  Rice University, MS-321, P.O. Box 1892,Houston, TX 77251bayaz@rice.edu


Corresponding author.

J. Thermal Sci. Eng. Appl 4(2), 021001 (Apr 16, 2012) (11 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4005731 History: Received January 16, 2011; Revised December 14, 2011; Published April 16, 2012; Online April 16, 2012

This paper presents a new design to convert spacecraft waste heat to electrical energy. The proposed device utilizes near-field radiative heat transfer incorporated with pyroelectric materials. To generate electricity, the pyroelectric materials are cyclically heated using spacecraft waste heat and cooled by the thermal environment of deep space (∼2.7 K). Near-field plane-to-plane radiative heat exchange within the device is calculated using a modified sphere-to-plane asymptotic approximation. This method is superimposed on multiple spheres to approximate a plane-to-plane environment. Silica and lithium fluoride coatings are considered in this study to maximize the near-field heat exchange. The efficiency of the device is 17% and 32% when compared to the Carnot cycle efficiency and the Curzon-Ahlborn efficiency, respectively. Initial results indicate that the device is promising but requires further development before it is manufactured for operational use. Suggestions for possible future developments to enhance the design are presented.

Copyright © 2012 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.



Grahic Jump Location
Figure 1

(a) Cooling configuration of spacecraft pyroelectric waste heat converter; (b) transition configuration of spacecraft pyroelectric waste heat converter; (c) heating configuration of spacecraft pyroelectric waste heat converter

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 2

Schematic representation of individual disks

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 3

Disks assembled in a sandwich configuration

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 4

Schematic representation of plane-to-sphere near-field radiative heat transfer approximation

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 5

Plane-to-plane configuration composed of multiple spheres and a plane

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 6

Comparison of calculation methods

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 7

Plane-to-plane near-field radiative heat transfer

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 8

Near-field radiation for device configuration with two planes heating each side

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 9

Near-field radiative heat transfer for the entire mounting apparatus

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 10

Near-field radiative transfer for circular mounting apparatus




Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In