26 May 2015 Multi-slope warm-up calorimetry of Integrated Dewar-Detector Assemblies
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Boil-off isothermal calorimetry of Integrated Dewar-Detector Assemblies (IDDA) is a routine part of acceptance testing. In this traditional approach, the cryogenic liquid coolant (typically LN2) is allowed to naturally boil off from the Dewar well to the atmosphere. The parasitic heat load is then evaluated as the product of the latent heat of vaporization and the "last drop" boil-off rate monitored usually by a mass flow meter.

An inherent limitation of this technique is that it is applicable only at the fixed boiling temperature of the chosen liquid coolant, for example, 77K for LN2. There is a need, therefore, to use other (often exotic) cryogenic liquids when calorimetry is needed at temperatures other than 77K. A further drawback is related to the transitional nature of last drop boiling, which manifests itself in development of enlarged bubbles, explosions and geysering. This results in an uneven flow rate and also affects the natural temperature gradient along the cold finger. Additionally, mass flow meters are known to have limited measurement accuracy.

The above considerations especially hold true for advanced High Operational Temperature IDDAs, typically featuring short cold fingers and working at 150K and above. In this work, we adapt the well-known technique of dual-slope calorimetry and show how accurate calorimetry may be performed by precooling the IDDA and comparing the warm-up slopes of the thermal transient processes under different trial added heat loads. Because of the simplicity, accuracy and ability to perform calorimetry literally at any temperature of interest, this technique shows good potential for replacing traditional boil-off calorimetry.
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Alexander Veprik, Alexander Veprik, Baruch Shlomovich, Baruch Shlomovich, Avi Tuito, Avi Tuito, "Multi-slope warm-up calorimetry of Integrated Dewar-Detector Assemblies", Proc. SPIE 9451, Infrared Technology and Applications XLI, 945122 (26 May 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2178189; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2178189

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