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Exploring device radiation variability and related assurance methodologies through large batch procurements



Prime contractor
Organisational Unit
Implementation progress
25 July 2022

Duration: 24 months


Radiation qualification of COTS components poses a unique challenge for their integration in space missions owing mainly to the following two aspects: (i) due to the lack of guaranteed homogeneous radiation response of COTS of the same reference, the level of assurance provided by a successful test of the same part reference (but different individual unit) is limited, (ii) if linked to relatively small procurement of parts, the cost of radiation testing can render the use of COTS unattractive. In both cases, increasing the size of the procurement batch plays in favor of the use of COTS. However, such large procurement are rare for space missions. Therefore, the main purpose of this idea is to exploit synergies between the large COTS procurement (roughly in the 1k-30k unit range) and qualification at CERN, and the related space needs. Indeed, CERN procures COTS in large quantities for radiation tolerant applications, due to the very large amount of electronic systems exposed to radiation for accelerator applications. Moreover, it is worth highlighting that such parts need to successfully pass high-energy proton component level tests with the following overall requirements: (i) TID tolerance up to 50 krad, (ii) displacement damage tolerance up to 1e12 cm-2 1-MeV neutron equivalent, (iii) no destructive SEEs up to a proton fluence of 1e12 cm-2, (iv) characterization of non-destructive SEE cross section. Such requirements are typically sufficient for LEO missions, if we do not consider heavy ion testing (which is not directly relevant to accelerator applications). Therefore, the purpose of this idea is to explore and implement a scheme through which space system designers could benefit from the availability of COTS lots qualified for CERN applications. The proposed activity will include an analysis of the related technical requirements and financial/legal aspects, as well as feasibility demonstration on a few selected parts.

Contract number
OSIP Idea Id
Related OSIP Campaign
COTS Campaign
Main application area
Generic for multiple space applications
Topical cluster
Exploring device radiation variability and related assurance methodologies through large batch procurements