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Logan — Utah State University's Space Dynamics Laboratory has delivered the final series of 35 thermal link and composite support structure assemblies to NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center for integration onto the James Webb Space Telescope. The SDL-built thermal links will help conduct heat away from the Webb Telescope's infrared instruments.
"Delivery of the Webb Telescope heat straps represents a significant milestone for both the Space Dynamics Lab and our NASA customer as they prepare final assembly, integration, and test for a 2018 planned launch," said Jed Hancock, director of civil space at the Space Dynamics Laboratory.
The flexible nature of the thermal links provides a continuous conductance path across the interfaces between the elements of the satellites flight instruments, its support structure and external radiators, allowing for integration tolerances and dynamic movement during testing and launch. "The light weight thermal links are made from high-purity aluminum foils and will maximize thermal conductance from the science instruments on JWST to their radiators that will allow each of the instruments to operate at desired temperatures," said Lorin Zollinger, SDL program manager.
A joint project of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Canadian Space Agency, the Webb Telescope will observe the most distant objects in the universe, provide images of the first galaxies formed and see unexplored planets around distant stars.