Materials International Space Station Experiment 5 Polymer Film Thermal Control Experiment
Miller, Sharon K. R., et al. (2011). "Materials International Space Station Experiment 5 Polymer Film Thermal Control Experiment." Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets 48 2: 240-245
It is known that polymer films can degrade as a result of space environmental exposure, but the magnitude of the mechanical property degradation and the degree to which the difference environmental factors play a role is not well understood. An experiment was flown on the Materials International Space Station Experiment 5 to determine the change in tensile strength and recent elongation of some typical polymer films exposed in a nadir-facing environment on the International Space Station and, where possible, compare with similar ram-and wake-facing experiment flown on the Materials Internationals Space Station Experiment 1 to get a better indication of the role the difference environments play in mechanical property change. It was found that the majority of the polymers tested experienced some loss in tensile/yield strength and percent elongation with polytetrafluroethylene Teflon having the greatest change. Where comparisons could be made with the Materials International Space Station Experiment 1, it appears that the loss in percent elongation is dependent on the radiation level while the loss of tensile strength is not as sensitive to the level of radiation.