Space Environment Exposure Tests of Functional Thin-Film Devices for Solar Sail (ExHAM-Solar Sail) - 11.22.16
The Space Environment Exposure Tests of Functional Thin-Film Devices for Solar Sail (ExHAM Solar Sail) investigation examines how space radiation affects thin-film solar cells and other thin-film devices. These thin films could be used in a variety of ways in future space missions, including solar sails pushed by the solar wind from the sun to move a spacecraft. By exposing thin-film solar cells to space, scientists are able to study how they degrade or deform in order to make improved films. Science Results for Everyone
Information Pending Experiment Details
Yoji Shirasawa, Ph.D., Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Japan
Koji Tanaka, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Japan
Osamu Mori, Ph.D., Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Japan
Ryu Funase, Ph.D., The University of Tokyo, Japan
Rikio Yokota, Ph.D., Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Japan
Hiroyuki Toyota, Ph.D., Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Japan
Takanobu Shimada, ME, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Japan
Eiji Kusano, Ph.D., Kanazawa Institute of Technology, Japan
Mengu Cho, Ph.D., Kyushu Institute of Technology, Japan
Minoru Iwata, Ph.D., Kyushu Institute of Technology, Japan
Hiroaki Miyake, Ph.D., Tokyo City University, Japan
Takanobu Muranaka, Ph.D., Chukyo University, Japan
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Tsukuba, Japan
Sponsoring Space Agency
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency
ISS Expedition Duration
September 2014 - March 2015; September 2015 - March 2016
- Functional thin-film devices such as solar cells, reflectivity control devices, and reinforcing materials are important to have anfor use in advanced function for spacecraft with flexible and light-weight structure. Integrated on-orbit space environment exposure tests aboard ISS will appropriate to seek to evaluate the usefulness of these devices for future space missions.
- This experiment will evaluates the effects of the space environment to on the material deterioration, mechanical deformation, and optical property variation of the functional thin-film devices.
- The experiment results will contribute to the development of space functional thin- film devices for a variety of applications, including inflatable reflector antennas, space solar power systems, and solar sails.
Thin-film solar cells are one way to provide a lightweight power source for future space missions. But ultraviolet light, radiation, and extreme temperature changes can damage the thin film. Testing thin-film devices in orbit helps engineers evaluate their use for future space missions. Four types of thin-film devices will be mounted to the Exposed Experiment Handhold Attachment Mechanism (ExHAM) on the International Space Station, where they will be exposed to harsh space conditions.
Functional thin-film devices and thin-film solar cells have potential earth applications such as light-weight solar battery charger, solar skin for homes, buildings, and electric vehicles. Evaluating their ability to withstand the extreme environment of space could also lead to new spin-off technology on Earth.
Operational Requirements and Protocols
Decadal Survey Recommendations
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