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18 February 2011 MEMS technology to achieve miniaturization, redundancy, and new functionality in space
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Abstract
Development of MEMS-based (Micro Electro Mechanical System) components and subsystems for space applications has been going on for at least two decades. The main driver for developing MEMS components for space is miniaturization through reduced mass, volume and power of individual components. However, the commercial breakthrough of MEMS has not occurred within the space business as it has within other branches such as the IT/telecom, the automotive industry, or other areas. In addition to miniaturization, increased redundancy and improved (or in some cases unique) performance has also been achieved by using MEMS-based components. MEMS pressure sensors integrated into the mechanical housing of another component is one example. Another example is an isolation valve which is both redundant and has an integrated particle filter on a single silicon chip weighing less than one gram. Currently there are few space missions using allowing newly developed MEMS devices onboard, but one of the exceptions is the Swedish-built Prisma satellites. One of the Prisma satellites has a MEMS-based cold gas propulsion system onboard, which contains a number of miniaturized and novel components. This paper presents the MEMS based cold gas propulsion system developed for Prisma including a number of novel components and their maiden spaceflight onboard Prisma last year.
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Tor-Arne Grönland, Maria Bendixen, Johan Bejhed, Håkan Johansson, Kerstin Jonsson, and Pelle Rangsten "MEMS technology to achieve miniaturization, redundancy, and new functionality in space", Proc. SPIE 7928, Reliability, Packaging, Testing, and Characterization of MEMS/MOEMS and Nanodevices X, 79280H (18 February 2011); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.876455
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