Subscale Refrigeration System Testing Successful

Subscale Refrigeration System Testing Successful

Testing of a subscale LSST Camera refrigeration system at SLAC has demonstrated the ability to run reliably for extended periods at consistent, acceptable temperature and power use. During study periods of typically 10 days, the system has run reliably at approximately -128 degrees Celsius with a total load of about 87.5 Watts. The subscale test began in June 2014 in order to simulate more realistic camera geometry and operations.

After beginning the tests using a non-flammable refrigeration mixture designated LSST29-19C, the team later returned to using the original mix, LSST-3N, whose higher hydrocarbon content aids in the transport of oil through the system. This provided more robust performance and improved temperature stability and overall reliability.  During the week of December 8, the team tested the feedback control system, used to stabilize the cryoplate temperature. With the feedback control system turned on, cryoplate temperature stabilized at -125C to better than plus/minus 0.1 degrees Celsius, with a total load about 97.5 Watts.

Financial support for Rubin Observatory comes from the National Science Foundation (NSF) through Cooperative Support Agreement No. 1202910, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science under Contract No. DE-AC02-76SF00515, and private funding raised by the LSST Corporation. The NSF-funded Rubin Observatory Project Office for construction was established as an operating center under management of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA).  The DOE-funded effort to build the the Rubin Observatory LSST Camera (LSSTCam) is managed by the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC).
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 to promote the progress of science. NSF supports basic research and people to create knowledge that transforms the future.
NSF and DOE will continue to support Rubin Observatory in its Operations phase. They will also provide support for scientific research with LSST data.   

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