Microelectronic Thermal Valve

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Attitude adjustment for picosatellites (picosats) with low mass only necessitate a thrust force in micronewtons; however, common technology in industry is too bulky or does not allow for fine thrust control. The environment of operation limits the ability of refinement due to precise volumes of liquid or gas delivery in pressures existing in low gravity. Power limitations, which are apparent in any environment, require more stringent criteria for the design of new aeronautics technology.

Researchers at Purdue University have developed a low-mass, low-power, self-contained attitude adjustment system that operates using the waste heat of the vehicle and produces fine thrust forces through the delivery of low volumes of gas and/or liquids. Through localized heating of the propulsion media and balancing of pressures created by the vehicle under normal operation, this technology can deliver lower, more specific quantities of thrust force than currently available technology.

-No moving parts
-Utilizes waste heat to operate

Potential Applications:
-Attitude adjustment
Dec 6, 2016
Utility Patent
United States
May 4, 2021

May 3, 2021
United States

Dec 6, 2015
United States
Purdue Office of Technology Commercialization
The Convergence Center
101 Foundry Drive, Suite 2500
West Lafayette, IN 47906

Phone: (765) 588-3475
Fax: (765) 463-3486
Email: otcip@prf.org