Materials for space applications?

So I'm working on this project for a inflatable solar sail (so a spherical solar sail) and we are really only verifying the deployment of the sail in space (from a cubesat)....We are doing a mock PDR and I need to find info on the sail we'll be using. My job is to find an "off the shelf" inflatable balloon that can be used in space. Traditionally, Mylar is used for solar sails. I'm having trouble finding a suitable product. Know of anywhere or a helpful search tool for some type of balloon that can withstand space???
 
If I want to inflate a balloon in space, what materials should I be looking for as the balloon? My requirement is I use a cool gas generator for inflation...so I just need help finding an "off the shelf" inflatable balloon (don't worry that it needs a CGG) that is strong enough for space
 

russ_watters

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If I want to inflate a balloon in space, what materials should I be looking for as the balloon? My requirement is I use a cool gas generator for inflation...so I just need help finding an "off the shelf" inflatable balloon (don't worry that it needs a CGG) that is strong enough for space
There's no such animal as "strong enough for space". What it needs is to be strong enough to support the gas pressure inside it.
 
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One thing you need to worry about is thermal considerations. VERY hot on the side facing the sun and VERY cold on the other side. You need something that dosn't melt or get too brittle.
 

anorlunda

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Hmmm, I presume you mean aluminized mylar to give it a mirror finish. Your challenge is to find material strong enough to hold up, but with as little mass as possible so that it can be big when inflated.

Before shopping, you should decide on some specifications for "suitable"

What is the required tensile strength? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultimate_tensile_strength

What is the required mass per unit area?

Without those specifications, each and every mylar film is "suitable"

Your project also reminds me of Project Echo: It made a very spectacular show up in the sky. Later, France proposed a ring-shaped mylar satellite as a work of art. It would be so big, it would appear larger than the Moon as seen from Earth. Alas, that project was cancelled.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Echo said:
Spacecraft properties
Manufacturer
Bell Labs
Launch mass 66 kg (146 lb)
Dimensions 30.48 m (100.0 ft) diameter sphere when inflated
Start of mission
Launch date
09:39:43, August 12, 1960
Rocket Thor-Delta
Launch site Cape Canaveral AFS SLC-17A

The 30.5-meter (100 ft) diameter balloon was made of 0.5-mil-thick (12.7 μm) metalized 0.2-micrometer-thick (0.00787-mil) biaxially oriented PET film ("Mylar") material, and it was used to redirect transcontinental and intercontinental telephone, radio, and television signals.
 

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