In recent years, Argotec, a technology provider of passive thermal control systems based on the use of two phase systems, has carried out research and development, creating different passive thermal control systems in the aerospace and industrial field. Thanks to these starting skills, the 2-PHASE (Passive Heat exchange for Aerospace and Earth applications) project has been developed, with the help of the Piedmont Region, between Argotec, Thales Alenia Space and OPTEC.
In collaboration with OPTEC, a leading designer of optical instruments, an innovative telescope cooling system has been developed, built and tested to operate in harsh environments using Peltier coolers and heat pipes. OPTEC has identified a way to improve the image quality of an on-ground telescope by eliminating thermal distortions on its optical support plate. The system uses an array of seven Peltier coolers controlled by an algorithm to accurately control and stabilise the temperature of the optical support plate within its operating temperature range. Each Peltier cooler is connected to a heat pipe which transports the waste heat to a fan cooling system.
A cooling and stabilisation system has been constructed, integrated with a telescope and tested. The presentation will describe the cooling and stabilisation system design, the test setup and initial results of the test campaign.