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Status of the Air Force nickel hydrogen low earth orbit life test

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2 Author(s)
House, S.D. ; US Air Force Philips Lab., Kirtland AFB, NM, USA ; Hill, C.A.

The US Air Force NiH/sub 2/ LEO (low earth orbit) life test consists of 200 cells undergoing real-time LEO cycling, pulse discharge testing, and storage testing. To date, three of the program's four objectives have been met: NiH/sub 2/ performance in LEO applications has been demonstrated. A significant number of cells have completed more than 20,000 cycles at 40% DOD. A database for cells of both 3.5 in. and 4.5 in. diameter has been generated. There have been no indications of any performance problems related to scaling up in terms of cell size. Initial data on the pulse discharge performance of a small number of cells has been demonstrated. Concerning the goal of achieving 20,000 cycles at 60% DOD, the data are mixed. Overall, it appears highly unlikely that cell designs such as those currently in the US Air Force test can achieve 20,000 cycles at 60%.<>

Published in:

Aerospace and Electronic Systems Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:8 ,  Issue: 12 )