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ASM Failure Analysis Case Histories

Handbook of Case Histories in Failure Analysis

Edited by
Khlefa A. Esaklul
Khlefa A. Esaklul
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ASM International
Volume
1
ISBN electronic:
978-1-62708-214-3
Publication date:
1992
Book Chapter

Failure of a Stirling Engine Heat Pipe

By
Thomas J. Moore
Thomas J. Moore
NASA Lewis Research Center
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;
James E. Cairelli
James E. Cairelli
NASA Lewis Research Center
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;
Kaveh Khalili
Kaveh Khalili
Stirling Thermal Motors, Inc.
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Published:
1992
Page range:
61 - 64

Abstract

A Stirling engine heat pipe failed after only 2h of operation in a test situation. Cracking at the leading edge of an evaporator fin allowed air to enter the system and react with the sodium coolant. The fin was fabricated from 0.8 mm (0.03 in.) thick Inconel 600 sheet. The wick material was type 316 stainless steel. Macro- and microexaminations of specimens from the failed heat pipe were conducted. The fin cracking was caused by overheating that produced intergranular corrosion in both the fin and the wick. Recommendations for alleviating the corrosion problem included reducing the heat flux, redesigning the wick, and reducing the oxygen content of the sodium.

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Thomas J. Moore, James E. Cairelli, Kaveh Khalili, 1992. "Failure of a Stirling Engine Heat Pipe", Handbook of Case Histories in Failure Analysis, Khlefa A. Esaklul

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