Tullahoma, TN – Gloyer-Taylor Laboratories, LLC (GTL), an aerospace engineering research and development company, was recently awarded NASA Phase I SBIR funding to research and develop low boiloff transfer lines. Reduced boil-off, increased heat transfer, and low thermal mass cryo-lines are useful in a variety of systems from space propellant transfer systems, launch vehicles, lunar systems, and heat exchangers.
In the proposed Phase I effort, GTL has identified two methods for reducing chill-down time. In recent studies, it has been shown that the production of super-hydrophilic surfaces can reduce chill-down time by altering the multi-phase boiling at the wall surface. The first method addresses this directly by altering the surface of stainless steel directly. The second method leverages GTL’s advanced cryogenic composites experience to produce a transfer line that further reduces chill-down time while also reducing the total mass of the system. Samples of both methods will be produced, and cryogenic testing will be performed on the samples in the phase I effort. This will provide a strong basis for the phase II effort where LOX and LCH4 testing can occur using existing facilities. The innovations presented in this effort represent a significant advancement in the state of the art. The reduction in mass of cryogenic systems is far reaching in the total effect on NASA systems.
The technology also has applications outside of NASA systems for both the Department of Defense and commercial markets. Reduced boil-off, chill-down time, and reduced mass are all beneficial to satellite systems and launch vehicles. Cryogenic fluid transfer is used in medical fields for MRI machines. Increased heat transfer on a surface is applicable to many systems, such as heat exchangers.
Formed in 2004, GTL is headquartered in Tullahoma, TN with additional offices in California and Utah. GTL is a high-technology company that specializes in providing transformational technologies to the aerospace industry such as composite cryogenic tanks, integrated airframes, specialty structural composites, aerospace system design and analysis, combustion stability analysis, launch vehicle technologies and advanced flywheel systems for power storage.