Temperature System

How is DS1's heat balance maintained?

What are heat sinks in DS1?

There are no active cooling devices on DS1. Cooling is accomplished primarily by passive radiators. There are passive radiators located around heat emitting subsystems like the ion engine and the solar panels.

The radiators work to cool the spacecraft because of the physical principle that heat moves towards areas that are cold, such as the vacuum of space. Radiation transfers heat between all objects that are at different temperatures. The transfer depends on how big a difference there is in temperature between things. It therefore becomes a very significant method of transferring heat in space, which resides very near absolute zero (absolute zero is -273 degrees C, deep space is only 3 degrees more than that). Typical solar panel array temperatures are on the order of 50 degrees C or more, so the temperature difference is great, thus increasing radiation heat transfer.

The positioning of the solar panels also help rid the ship of heat. The solar arrays are mounted edge-on more than two feet away from the spacecraft, so there is plenty of cold space distance around them.

Thermal blankets insulate the spacecraft, but also perform a cooling function because they minimize any new heat absorption from the Sun.

How is DS1's heat balance maintained?
How does heat move?

What is heat balance?
What is a heat sink?
What are heat sources in DS1?
What temperature is the ion engine?
How efficient are solar panels?
How does the shunt vent heat into space?

What other forms of energy does a spacecraft releases into space?
What happens to the heat once it is released into space?
What materials are used for thermal control on DS1?
Where does energy come from and go?