Skip to main content
The Development of LOX-Based Magnetic Fluid Technology and its Impact on Small Satellites
Utah Space Grant Consortium
  • Jeffrey C. Boulware, Utah State University
  • Heng Ban, Utah State University - Faculty Advisor
Utah State University
Start Date
10-5-2010 9:30 AM
A magnetic fluid system could potentially replace mechanically moving parts in a satellite as a means of increasing system reliability and mission lifetime, but rather than a standard ferrofluid with magnetic particles, liquid oxygen (LOX) may be a more adequate working fluid. As a pure paramagnetic cryogen, LOX is already heavily used in space, but still requires basic research before being integrated into system development. The objectives of the research conducted were to verify LOX as a magnetic working fluid through experiment and establish a theoretical model to describe its behavior. This paper presents the theoretical, experimental, and numerical results of a slug of LOX being pulsed by a 1.1 T solenoid in a quartz tube with an inner diameter of 1.9 mm. The slug oscillated about the solenoid at 6-8 Hz, producing a pressure change of up to 1.2 kPa. System efficiency based on the Mason number was also studied for various geometric setups, and, using a one-dimensional, finite-differenced model in Matlab 2008a, the numerical analyses confirmed the theoretical model. The research provides groundwork for future applied studies using Comsol Multiphysics 3.5a with complex designs.
Citation Information
Jeffrey C. Boulware and Heng Ban. "The Development of LOX-Based Magnetic Fluid Technology and its Impact on Small Satellites" (2010)
Available at: