Development of cryogenic propellant storage tank inner surface coating for elimination of cryogen boiloff in reduced gravity

PI: Jacob Chung, University of Florida - Gainesville

The Development of Cryogenic Propellant Storage Tank Inner Surface Coating for Elimination of Cryogen Boiloff in Reduced Gravity project will test the effectiveness of several coating candidates to minimize/eliminate propellant boiloff. Propellant boiloff can occur on a storage tank’s internal surface from external heat leakage. The vapor generation due to boiloff can result in propellant loss. Exploring and developing capabilities of various coating materials and surface finish combinations could help in developing technology to minimize/eliminate boiloff and lead to substantial propellant savings.

Technology Areas (?)
  • NA
Problem Statement

Various lunar and cislunar space architecture elements require long-term cryogenic propellant storage. A thin film with low thermal conductivity could discourage or prevent boiling nucleation, potentially leading to substantial propellant savings.

Technology Maturation

This project aims to provide 0g experimental data and data analysis on the boiling deterrence/prevention characteristics of the candidate coating material and surface finish combinations. The flight tests aim to advance this innovation’s technology readiness level (TRL) to TRL 5 or higher. This work is a continuation of previous flight testing under T0035, T0172, T0189, and T0244.

Future Customers

Cryogenic propellant storage tank design and fluid management

Technology Details

  • Selection Date
    TechFlights21 (Dec 2021)
  • Program Status
  • Current TRL (?)
    Successful FOP Flights
  • 0 Parabolic

Development Team

Web Accessibility and Privacy Notices Curator: Alexander van Dijk Responsible NASA Official: Stephan Ord Last Update: November 16, 2018