Gravity Probe B Dewar / Probe Concept
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    Gravity Probe B Dewar / Probe Concept 

    R.T. Parmley, J. Goodman, M. Regelbrugge, S.W.K. Yuan.

    Research and Development Division, Lockheed Missiles and Space Company, Inc.

    Palo Alto, California 94304


    Preliminary analyses and development tests are beginning to define the Gravity Probe B (GP-B) superfluid helium dewar and probe that contain the scientific instrument. The status of the current dewar and probe concept is reported, and supporting analyses used to define the neck tube region are described.

    The GP-B is a new test of Einstein's General Theory of Relativity based on measuring with extreme precision in an Earth-orbiting satellite the precessions of gyroscopes with respect to a telescope pointed at a suitable guide star. The design of the experiment requires that the gyroscopes and reference telescope operate at liquid helium (LHe) temperatures, and hence, that the entire mechanical portion of the scientific instrument be mounted in a long-hold-time liquid helium dewar. This paper discusses the status of the analyses and design of the probe which holds the scientific instrument and the superfluid helium (SFHe)dewar into which the probe in mounted.

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    About the author- Dr. Sidney Yuan is a consultant in the field of Low Temperature Physics and Cryogenics, and has written a Book on Cryogenics and published extensively in the field. E-Mail.

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