High quality semi-conductor and protein crystals can be grown in space by utilizing the microgravity environment in which natural convection and sedimentation effects are suppressed. But some vibrations exist on space platforms such as Space Shuttle and International Space Station that can induce crystal and fluid motions, affecting the quality of the crystals grown in space. Since the effects of small vibrations (called g-jitter) on crystal growth are not yet precisely known in space, experimental and theoretical investigations are being conducted to better understand the vibration effects on the motion of protein crystals and solid particles in liquid-filled cells. Another topic under investigation is the operation of pulsating heat pipes under microgravity. A recent experiment performed on a parabolic airplane has shown the positive effect of reduced gravity on the pulsating motion of vapour-liquid two-phase flow and heat transport in pulsating heat pipes.
Studies of Vibration-Induced Multi-Phase Fluid Phenomena and Pulsating Heat Pipe Performance Under Microgravity
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Kawaji, M. "Studies of Vibration-Induced Multi-Phase Fluid Phenomena and Pulsating Heat Pipe Performance Under Microgravity." Proceedings of the ASME/JSME 2003 4th Joint Fluids Summer Engineering Conference. Volume 2: Symposia, Parts A, B, and C. Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. July 6–10, 2003. pp. 1293-1296. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/FEDSM2003-45664
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