Available Technology

Cryogenic Hydraulically Actuated Isolation Valve

Actuation requires only upstream pressure and 22-watt DC power supply
NASA&#39s cryogenic isolation valve technology uses solenoid valves powered by direct current (DC) electrical energy to control and redirect the energy stored in the upstream line pressure. Powering the solenoid valves only requires a DC power source capable of supplying 22 watts that can be distributed and controlled in an on/off manner. By achieving actuation using only upstream line pressure and a 22-watt DC power source, many additional support systems that are required for electromechanical and pneumatic actuation are eliminated. This reduction of parts results in several benefits, including reduced footprint, weight, and potential cost of the valve in addition to lower energy consumption. NASA fabricated several operational prototype valves using this technology for a rocket company. The table below shows the results of tests performed on these valves under cryogenic conditions. Please contact the NASA MSFC Technology Transfer Office for additional information.
Patent Abstract: 
Researchers at NASA&#39s Marshall Space Flight Center have developed a cryogenic isolation valve that utilizes the upstream line pressure of cryogenic fluids for actuation. Previously, the use of cryogenic fluids for actuation systems had been too difficult to control and resulted in unsafe operating conditions due to the cryogenic fluid used for actuation being separated from the main body of the valve. Once separated, the cryogenic fluid would heat too quickly and vaporize, resulting in high, volatile pressures. To avoid these issues, cryogenic fluid had historically been controlled and redirected using either electromechanical or pneumatic actuation systems. By using the upstream line pressure of the cryogenic fluid for actuation, NASA&#39s cryogenic isolation valve eliminates the need for the complex support systems that are necessary with electromechanical and pneumatic actuation systems.

Requires only upstream line pressure and DC power source capable of 22 watts for actuation, eliminating the need for support systems; reducing footprint, energy consumption, and cost; and reducing weight by up to 63%


Commercial Space

Liquified natural gas

Air separation

HVAC refrigerant

Semiconductor manufacturing

Pharmaceutical processing

Patent Number: 
Internal Laboratory Ref #: 
Patent Status: 
Patent Issue Date: 
December 19, 2018
Lab Representatives
Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to Google Plus Share to Linkedin