Microgravity Science and Technology

, Volume 31, Issue 1, pp 109–122 | Cite as

Screen Compliance Experiments for Application of Liquid Acquisition Device in Space

  • Chase Camarotti
  • Oscar Deng
  • Samuel Darr
  • Jason Hartwig
  • J. N. ChungEmail author
Original Article


The purpose of a liquid acquisition device (LAD) is to separate liquid and vapor phases inside a spacecraft propellant storage tank in the reduced gravity and microgravity conditions of space so that vapor-free liquid can be extracted to the transfer line. A popular type of LAD called a screen channel LAD or gallery arm, uses a fine porous screen and surface tension forces of the liquid to allow pure liquid to flow through the screen while blocking vapor penetration. To analyze, size, and optimize the design of LADs for future in-space propellant transfer systems, models and data are required for the four fundamental influential factors for LAD systems, including bubble point, flow-through-screen pressure drop, wicking rate, and screen compliance for a wide variety of screen meshes. While there is sporadic data available for three of these parameters, there is no published quantitative data for screen compliance. During the transient startup of propellant transfer, the liquid must be accelerated from rest to the steady flow demand velocity, which causes the screen to deform or comply, so compliance data is required for accurate transient LAD analyses; most design codes only consider steady state analysis. This paper presents screen compliance experiments on 14 different screens, examining the effects of fineness of mesh, open area, and screen metal type on compliance. A basic equation of state is also developed and validated against the data which can be easily integrated into any transient LAD flow code to model propellant transfer.


Liquid acquisition device Screen compliance Liquid-vapor separation Microgravity Space propellant storage tank 



Cross sectional area of the control volume channel


Screen open area


Gravitational acceleration relative to the fluid flow


Screen thickness


Acceleration due to gravity


Height of liquid column on top of screen


Linear slope for ΔPSC/TSC curve in screen compliance


Number of shute wires per inch


Number of warp wires per inch


Wetted circumference of the screen\




Effective thickness of the screen deflection


Maximum effective thickness of the screen deflection


Initial effective thickness of the screen deflection


Velocity of the Fluid


Volume Extracted from Liquid Reservoir under Screen


Width of the Screen


Dimension along the Channel


Height relative to the acceleration vector


Bubble point pressure


Screen compliance pressure difference across screen


Fluid kinematic viscosity


Fluid density



This work was funded by the Evolvable Cryogenics Project under the Space Technology Mission Directorate at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) as well as the Florida Space Grant Consortium (FSGC) Masters Fellowship Program.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chase Camarotti
    • 1
  • Oscar Deng
    • 1
  • Samuel Darr
    • 1
  • Jason Hartwig
    • 2
  • J. N. Chung
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Cryogenics Heat Transfer Laboratory, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace EngineeringUniversity of FloridaGainesvilleUSA
  2. 2.NASA Glenn Research CenterClevelandUSA

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