Data from cryo-neutron phase change experiments with LH2 and LCH4

Published: 15 December 2021| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/z5zc7kk76g.1
Kishan Bellur


This dataset describes both raw and analyzed results from liquid-vapor phase change experiments with cryogenic propellants. Evaporation/condensation experiments with hydrogen and methane were conducted at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, MD at the NIST Center for Neutron Research (NCNR). Tests were conducted in cylindrical and conical containers of various sizes and materials. Neutron imaging was used as a non-destructive visualization tool to probe inside the opaque metallic containers. Phase change (evaporation/condensation) was induced through precise control of pressure and/or temperature. Saturation points between 80 - 230 kPa were tested. Evaporation/condensation rates were determined through image processing. The motivation behind the experiments were to determine the accommodation coefficient which are inputs to kinetic models of phase change that represent the ratio of molecules that cross the liquid vapor interface. The values of the coefficients are published elsewhere and the data (images, temperature and pressure) are provided here. To the authors' best knowledge, these are the first known neutron images of controlled cryogenic propellant phase change. The unique dataset contains a wealth of information on meniscus evaporation/condensation, phase change dynamics, thin film formation, capillary wicking, cryogenic heat transfer and neutron imaging statistics. The data could also be used as a benchmark for future experiments or as a dataset for model validation.


Steps to reproduce

The tests are conducted using a 70 mm cryostat placed inside the BT-2 beam line at the NIST Center for Neutron Research at Gaithersburg, MD. Vapor hydrogen and methane is condensed inside cylindrical test cells of various shapoes and sizes. The condensate liquid inside the optically opaque test cells are visualized though neutron imaging. Different evaporation and condensation rates are achieved through pressure and temperature control. The evaporation/condensation rates are determined through image processing. Details of the experiment setup and subsequent analysis are published elsewhere.


University of Washington, Michigan Technological University, University of Cincinnati, NIST Center for Neutron Research


Condensation, Evaporation, Neutron Scattering, Modeling of Thin Liquid Film, Hydrogen, Cryogenics, Methane, Vapor-Liquid Equilibrium