3D-plus supplies critical components on Solar Orbiter spacecraft
(10 February 2020 - HEICO) HEICO Corporation today announced that its Buc, France-based 3D PLUS subsidiary supplied numerous mission-critical and high-reliability components on the Solar Orbiter space mission, which successfully launched from Cape Canaveral, FL overnight. 3D PLUS is part of HEICO’s Electronic Technologies Group.
Solar Orbiter will provide the first views of the Sun's uncharted polar regions, giving unprecedented insight into how our parent star works. The mission will also investigate how intense radiation and energetic particles being blasted out from the Sun and carried by the solar wind through the Solar System impact our home planet, allowing us to better understand and predict periods of stormy 'space weather', which can have serious impacts on navigation, electronics and communications.
The Solar Orbiter is the result of an international collaboration led by the European Space Agency (ESA) and including the U.S.A.’s National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), with the spacecraft being developed by Airbus in France.
Caliste-SO detectors. (courtesy: L. Godart/CEA)
Among the ten instruments on the Solar Orbiter, 3D PLUS is a key component supplier on many of them, including the Spectrometer/Telescope for Imaging X-rays (STIX), which performs hard X-ray imaging spectroscopy of solar flares and will allow highly precise spectro-imaging of solar flares in the field of hard X-rays. The STIX instrument embeds many 3D PLUS volatile and non-volatile memory parts, including 3D PLUS’ 512 Mbit SRAM, 64 Gbit NAND Flash and 8Mbit EEPROM modules.
3D PLUS also supplied highly-reliable SRAM, SDRAM and NOR Flash modules in the Polarimetric and Helioseismic Imager (PHI), as well as SDRAM and NAND Flash modules in the spacecraft’s Energetic Particle Detector (EPD). 3D PLUS memories offer the smallest footprint, which results from 3D PLUS’ significant expertise in miniaturization, while providing very high densities for electronic designs.
In addition to the memory modules, the Solar Orbiter’s Extreme Ultraviolet Imager (EUI) instrument integrates 3D PLUS high integration and space qualified all-in-one Latch-up Current Limiter (LCL), which 3D PLUS believes offers the best solution for power lines protection in advanced high performance electronics and memory banks in space applications.
Pierre Maurice, 3D PLUS’s Co-Founder and President, remarked, “3D PLUS is proud to contribute to such a challenging mission with ambitious scientific objectives, since Solar Orbiter, joined to the Parker Solar Probe mission, will allow unprecedented insight into how Earth’s parent star works.”
Laurans A. Mendelson, HEICO’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, along with Victor H. Mendelson, HEICO’s Co-President and Chief Executive Officer of its Electronic Technologies Group, commented, “We congratulate ESA on leading this momentus project, along with its partners at NASA, Airbus, 3D PLUS and the numerous other contributors to this effort. HEICO takes great pride in 3D PLUS' involvement in this historic mission.”
3D PLUS is a French SME, world leader in the design and manufacturing of high-performance and high reliability components miniaturized with its unique 3D vertical interconnect technology.
With more than 160,000 modules into space early 2020 and a production of more than 30,000 space qualified modules per year in its facility nearby Paris, 3D PLUS provides all stakeholders of the global space industry for over 20 years for telecommunications applications, Earth observation, navigation, launchers and human spaceflight, science missions, small satellites and constellations.
HEICO Corporation is engaged primarily in the design, production, servicing and distribution of products and services to certain niche segments of the aviation, defense, space, medical, telecommunications and electronics industries through its Hollywood, Florida-based Flight Support Group and its Miami, Florida-based Electronic Technologies Group. HEICO's customers include a majority of the world's airlines and overhaul shops, as well as numerous defense and space contractors and military agencies worldwide, in addition to medical, telecommunications and electronics equipment manufacturers.