Sun Sensors for Satellites and Space Applications2020-01-16T15:07:49+01:00

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1004, 2021

Changing temperature beyond satellite speed.

A trio of Lens R&D Sunsensors is changing temperature under vacuum at a speed that surpasses that of a real satellite. The plot shows the temperature profiles achieved for the BiSon Sunsensors in frame of the ongoing ESA life testing qualification and the MAUS Cubesat Sunsensor. Contrary to common high speed cycling (which is generally performed under a nitrogen atmosphere) these tests are performed under vacuum. This is done in our dedicated Sunsensor thermal vacuum (TVAC) test facility. The  facility can hold up to 9 Sunsensors simultaneously and is controlled by a fluid loop controlled hotplate. Custom developed for Lens [...]

2103, 2021

Tested beyond levels required

Last week the new custom developed photodiodes that are used in the Lens R&D fine Sunsensors (BiSon and MAUS) have been tested at the Delft Reactor Institute (DRI) to levels beyond what would be required for any known mission. Given the high radiation levels to be tested for the devices it had become impractical to perform regular Co60 tests for Total Ionizing Dose (TID) and Proton tests for displacement damage (TNID). Following discussions with ESA on how to best test the diodes it was decided to use 1MeV electrons instead. These tests are also used for solarcells which means that [...]

1503, 2021

mystery solved

Last year we performed what is called so called highly accelerated life testing (HALT) and during these tests it turned out that even though the setup is only taken to 125°C for 2000 hours, there was a failure on the pigtails that were connected to some of the Sunsensors. The root cause of this failure was a mystery until today. In advance of the HALT test we irradiated 6 diodes with 4 10^14 1MeV electrons (equivalent to 9.4Mrad) Because we are preparing for additional radiation tests taking the diodes up to 8.10^14 1MeV electrons (18.8Mrad) we needed 6 pigtails again [...]

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