The sloshing of liquids in low-gravity entails several technical challenges for spacecraft designers and operators. Those include the generation of significant attitude disturbances, the uncontrolled displacement of the center of mass of the vehicle or the production of gas bubbles, among others. Magnetic fields can be used to induce the reorientation of magnetically susceptible propellants and improve the controllability of a fluid system. Despite being proposed in the early 1960s, this approach remains largely unexplored. This paper provides new insight into the prospects and challenges of using magnetic control of space propellants. Key unanswered theoretical and technical questions are identified, highlighting the importance of developing appropriate analytical tools and fluid-magnetic simulation frameworks. New results associated with the reachability, scaling, long-term thermal and radiation stability, and efficiency of paramagnetic and ferromagnetic propellants are presented. Magnetic settling forces are shown to enhance the stability and speed up the oscillatory response of the liquid, leading to more predictable propellant management systems for different scales and filling ratios. These effects are particularly relevant for ferrofluids, whose enhanced magnetic properties make them excellent candidates for active sloshing control applications in space.

Magnetic Positive Positioning: Toward the application in space propulsion

Maggi F.;
2021-01-01

Abstract

The sloshing of liquids in low-gravity entails several technical challenges for spacecraft designers and operators. Those include the generation of significant attitude disturbances, the uncontrolled displacement of the center of mass of the vehicle or the production of gas bubbles, among others. Magnetic fields can be used to induce the reorientation of magnetically susceptible propellants and improve the controllability of a fluid system. Despite being proposed in the early 1960s, this approach remains largely unexplored. This paper provides new insight into the prospects and challenges of using magnetic control of space propellants. Key unanswered theoretical and technical questions are identified, highlighting the importance of developing appropriate analytical tools and fluid-magnetic simulation frameworks. New results associated with the reachability, scaling, long-term thermal and radiation stability, and efficiency of paramagnetic and ferromagnetic propellants are presented. Magnetic settling forces are shown to enhance the stability and speed up the oscillatory response of the liquid, leading to more predictable propellant management systems for different scales and filling ratios. These effects are particularly relevant for ferrofluids, whose enhanced magnetic properties make them excellent candidates for active sloshing control applications in space.
Ferrofluids
Low-gravity
Magnetic liquid sloshing
Magnetic Positive Positioning
Space technology
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11311/1180346
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