Engineering researchers to share in a more than $1 million NASA project
Tuesday, April 10, 2018
MANHATTAN — Amy Betz and Melanie Derby, both assistant professors of mechanical and nuclear engineering at Kansas State University, are participants in a statewide $1.125 million project funded through the NASA EPSCoR Cooperative Agreement Notice, or CAN, program.
Wichita State University, the lead on the project, will develop new manufacturing techniques to fabricate complex 3-D structures at the microscale in metals.
Betz, principal investigator, and Derby, co-lead, have been awarded $289,000 to design and test wicking structures, fabricated at Wichita State University, to enhance water collection and heat transport. The remainder of the funds will be distributed to other Kansas universities.
The project, "Efficient and Compact Thermal and Water Management Systems Using Novel Capillary Structure for Space Technology," will also investigatecontrolling transport of water and heat to allow for significant improvements of indoor environments in space suits, vehicles and stations.
"This work will lead to new fundamental insight into water and heat transport, allowing for lighter and more efficient heat exchangers and water collection units for space applications," Betz said. "These results may also lead to cheaper and more compact heat exchangers on earth."
The three-year award will enhance both research and teaching at Kansas State University, with results from the research to be used in several class projects and outreach activities.
"We expect the work done through this award to promote a long-term relationship between K-State and NASA research centers," Betz said.