Thermal Analysis and Design

Thermal Analysis and Opto-mechanical Design Approaches

Example of Visible versus Thermal Radiation: Reflections from a backlit glass door

Subjects covered :

  • Introduction to the Physics of Heat Transfer (HT): Conduction, Convection, and the non-linear and tricky one to consider: Radiation.
  • Specificities related to the 3 HT modes: Conduction, Convection, and particularly Radiation.
  • How HT influences Optics, via the Structures and their relative positions, via the change of shapes, and via the change of material properties.
  • Temperature and wavelength dependence of structural and optical materials, effects of the presence and absence of air.
  • How to model such multiple analysis: the ultimate STOP analysis.
  • How to influence the heat paths for optical systems, and optical mounts (a summary of, as this is strongly related to the Opto-Mechanical Design course).
  • HT aspects in Space, heat sources: Sun, Planets, ... and heat sinks: Deep Space ...
  • HT related to the different spacecraft orbits, LEO, MEO, GEO, deep space exploration, Sun observation ...
  • ESA ECSS documentation, where are the Heat Transfer aspects ?
  • HT specification from Spacecraft to subsystem, related active and passively controlled Temperature spacecraft concepts
  • HT for constant and variable temperature instruments, for cryogenic instruments, operational amd non-op. temperatures
  • HT testing, on ground but for Space and vacuum operations (TVC), artefacts from the on-ground testing.


The proposed course is divided into a series of roughly one hour lectures, followed by a short exercise session.