Lightweight Wideband Satcomm Phased Array (LWSPA)

Physical Sciences Inc. (PSI) has been awarded a program from the U.S. Air Force to develop reliable, lightweight heat exchangers for a variety of heating and cooling applications.

Traditionally manufactured shell tube, microchannel, and plate fin heat exchangers are typically limited to rectangular prism shapes, which prevents them from being incorporated into irregular volumes on aircraft. Additive manufacturing presents an attractive alternative because complex shapes can be produced. In addition, a heat exchanger design can be designed in CAD and readily adapted to future needs or to accommodate changes. Thus, PSI is developing an additively manufactured (AM) heat exchanger that has already achieved laboratory performance demonstration at realistic conditions. The AM heat exchanger improves on heat transfer performance compared to existing refrigeration condensers and evaporators by 2 to 7 times.
PSI’s technology is applicable to light-weight, thin walled components such as heat exchangers, tanks and dewars. This research has immediate application to military and space vehicles. Commercial markets include airborne and ground based heat exchangers of all types. All vehicles, especially air, space, and undersea vehicles benefit from compact heat exchangers because they are often thermally limited. Greater power to weight and power to volume yield increased system performance for military and commercial needs.

PSI’s conformal heat exchanger will allow enhanced cooling to be applied to existing systems without the need for redesign, since it utilizes existing wasted space such as unoccupied fuselage or pod volume. PSI has also shown heat exchanger integration into fuel and air ducting, and the design can be applied to structural heat exchangers as well.

For more information, contact:

Dr. Sean Torrez
Area Manager, Deployable Technologies
Physical Sciences Inc.
Telephone: (978) 689-0003