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Quantifying facility performance during thermophysical property measurement of liquid Zr using Electrostatic Levitation
Jannatun Nawer and Douglas M. Matson

Density, thermal expansion coefficient, surface tension and viscosity of liquid Zr at high temperatures were measured by oscillating droplet method in two Electrostatic Levitation (ESL) facilities. The ground-based tests at NASA MSFC ESL were conducted in vacuum and the space-based tests at JAXA ELF were conducted in Argon atmosphere with both results reported as a function of temperature. The accuracy and precision of each set of the measurement techniques has been reported using a detailed uncertainty analysis on both facilities. The uncertainties associated with each measurement were used to characterize performance for each facility. Zr samples processed in microgravity showed heavy influence of oxidation which lowered the natural frequency and thus significantly affecting the accuracy of surface tension measurement. The ground-based results are comparable to previously reported literature values.

Keywords: Density, thermal expansion coefficient, surface tension, viscosity, uncertainty analysis, facility performance, Electrostatic levitation, oxidation

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DOI: 10.32908/hthp.v52.1315