APL Venus Environment Chamber (AVEC)

The APL Venus Environment Chamber (AVEC) is a compact laboratory simulation vessel designed to mimic the pressure, temperature and atmospheric compositional conditions at the interface between Venus’ (and potentially other planetary bodies’) surface and atmosphere.

Made of the nickel-chromium superalloy Inconel®, AVEC can reach and sustain temperatures ranging from 869-878 F (465-470 C) at pressures of 92-96 atmospheres using a gas composition of carbon dioxide, molecular nitrogen and a trace number of other gases that mimics the lower atmosphere of Venus.

At roughly 2.5 inches (6.4 centimeters) in diameter and 9 inches (23 centimeters) deep, AVEC allows researchers to perform simple gas-solid reaction chemistry experiments, expose samples to Venus-like and other simulated atmospheres at elevated temperature and pressure, and externally monitor simple sensors or devices.

AVEC supports multiple technology development and science research projects within APL and with external partners, including high-temperature materials testing, gas-solid mineral reaction experiments, high-temperature sensor components, other testing for sensor development and mission applications.