3D Printed Wicks for Loop Heat Pipes

Date

2023-07-16

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

2023 International Conference on Environmental Systems

Abstract

This paper describes the development of 3D printed wicks for loop heat pipes. This work is part of an overall effort by Advanced Cooling Technologies, Inc. to develop 3D printed loop heat pipes as a low-cost, rapidly-manufacturable alternative technology to standard loop heat pipes for future high-performance small spacecraft. The wicks were built using laser powder bed fusion of standard 316L SS powder. The build parameters were varied by controlling a custom variable called the energy density to produce an assortment of wicks with different capillary metrics, i.e., porosity, permeability, and maximum pore radius. The variation in the capillary metrics, determined using a combination of capillary flow porometry and mercury intrusion porosimetry, was studied with respect to the energy density. The pore distribution was also studied by analyzing in detail the intrusion curves acquired during mercury intrusion porosimetry. The results from this study can serve as general guidelines for building future 3D printed wicks for loop heat pipes with the desired capillary performance.

Description

Rohit Gupta, Advanced Cooling Technologies, Inc., USA
Chien-Hua Chen, Advanced Cooling Technologies, Inc., USA
William G. Anderson, Advanced Cooling Technologies, Inc., USA
ICES201: Two-Phase Thermal Control Technology
The 52nd International Conference on Environmental Systems was held in Calgary, Canada, on 16 July 2023 through 20 July 2023.

Keywords

3d printing, wick, loop heat pipe, evaporator

Citation