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20 August 2010 Optical characterization of condensed RTV effluent as a function of temperature
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Room Temperature Vulcanized (RTV) materials, such as silicone adhesives, are commonly used to bond components of communication satellites and other types of spacecraft. The elevated satellite operating temperature causes the unused catalyst material in the RTV to volatize, which can then re-deposit or condense onto other spacecraft surfaces. This Volatile Condensable Material (VCM) can condense onto optically-sensitive spacecraft surfaces and significantly alter their original, beginning-of-life (BOL) optical properties, such as solar absorptance and emittance, causing unintended performance loss of the spacecraft. Knowledge of the optical impact of VCM's is therefore a major concern of spacecraft designers and spacecraft-contamination engineers. In view of this we have employed in-situ spectroscopic ellipsometry to monitor in real time the optical constants of the condensed effluent of RTV-566, SCV-2590-2 and SCV-2590 as function of condensation temperature from 120 K to 180 K. The film is condensed directly on to a QCM crystal. Thus the QCM generated deposition trajectory and thickness can be correlated to the optical trajectory and thickness, yielding the film density. We will present the optical constants, n and k, as a function the condensation temperature.
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N. J. Ianno, J. Pu, and F. Zhou "Optical characterization of condensed RTV effluent as a function of temperature", Proc. SPIE 7794, Optical System Contamination: Effects, Measurements, and Control 2010, 779402 (20 August 2010);

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