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Experimental study of transient liquid motion in orbiting spacecraft

By R. L. Berry and J. R. Tegart


A test program was conducted involving forty-five drops of liquid propellant in instrumented tanks. Biaxial, low-g accelerations were applied to the model propellant tanks during free-fall testing, and forces exerted during liquid reorientation were measured and recorded. High speed photographic records of the liquid reorientation were also made. The test data was used to verify a mechanical analog which portrays the liquid as a point mass moving on an ellipsoidal constraint surface. The mechanical analog was coded into two FORTRAN 4 digital computer programs. Results showed excellent correlation between test data and analytical predictions of reorientation forces and liquid center of mass motion, verifying the basic analytical approach

Year: 1976
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