Keywords

Space Shuttle, Thermal Protection System, tile, Orbiter, subnominal bond

Abstract

This study researched the history of Space Shuttle Reusable Surface Insulation which was designed and developed for use on the United States Orbiter fleet to protect from the high heating experienced during reentry through Earth's atmosphere. Specifically the tile system which is attached to the structure by the means of an RTV adhesive has experienced situations where the bonds are identified as subnominal. The history of these subnominal conditions is presented along with a recent identification of a subnominal bond between the Strain Isolation Pad and the tile substrate itself. Tests were run to identify the cause of these subnominal conditions and also to show how these conditions were proved to be acceptable for flight. The study also goes into cases that could be used to identify subnominal conditions on tile as a non-destructive test prior to flight. Several options of non-destructive testing were identified and recommendations are given for future research into this topic. A recent topic is also discussed in the instance where gap fillers were identified during the STS-114 mission that did not properly adhere to the substrate. The gap fillers were found protruding past the Outer Mold Line of the vehicle which required an unprecedented spacewalk to remove them to allow for a safe reentry through the atmosphere.

Notes

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Graduation Date

2006

Semester

Spring

Advisor

Moslehy, Faissal

Degree

Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering (M.S.A.E.)

College

College of Engineering and Computer Science

Department

Mechanical, Materials and Aerospace Engineering;

Degree Program

Aerospace Engineering

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0000947

URL

http://purl.fcla.edu/fcla/etd/CFE0000947

Language

English

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Masters Thesis (Open Access)

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