Gaining a partnership with European space manufacturer Thales Alenia Space and Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES), Liebherr is entering a new market: Liebherr-Aerospace, who has been active in the aviation industry for decades, is developing thermal management capabilities for a Mechanically Pumped Loop (MPL) cooling system for satellites.
Liebherr-Aerospace Toulouse SAS, based in Toulouse (France), together with Thales Alenia Space, Joint Venture between Thales (67 %) and Leonardo (33 %) and CNES, is developing industrial production and co-design capabilities for evaporators and condensers. These are key components of the next-generation telecommunication satellite’s technology payload and platform cooling system, which actively manages the electronic heat dissipation.
Manufacturing evaporators and condensers for future MPL cooling systems will be a demanding assignment: As part of an innovative MPL, they will be in space for at least 15 years without maintenance. This means that the evaporators and condensers have to be completely free from leakage as well as extremely reliable and robust to operate flawlessly during this period at high heat-exchange performances. The telecommunication satellites fast-moving market is more and more demanding in terms of responsiveness, high quality control and cost competitiveness. To be able to produce evaporators and condensers reaching new standards, Liebherr-Aerospace’s French-based center of excellence is developing industrial welding and manufacturing processes, which are both innovative and highly repeatable for both space and serial production levels of requirements.
Telecommunication satellites payload cooling: adapting to a fast-moving market
Thales Alenia Space has been building up its product range differentiation through technology advance. Cooling electronics to be mounted on-board powerful digital telecom payloads has become a challenge due to increasing density needed to meet such expectations. Thales Alenia Space is continuously developing innovations as well as building relevant partnerships to face that fast-moving market.