Radiation effects screening campaign planning algorithm and test platform for modern commercial off the shelf electronics

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Ward, Jesse
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Significant growth in the space industry has occurred in the last decade, largely thanks to technical advancements that have reduced the cost of select subsystems. For instance, structural and mechanical systems have seen cost reductions through more efficient manufacturing methods, less expensive materials, and improved simulations. Further cost reductions can still be obtained in the domain of space electronics. This domain continues to experience high costs due to the manufacturing methods and qualification processes required to certify radiation-hardened electronics. Well-defined processes to approve inexpensive commercial electronics for use in space are needed if the broader space electronics industry is to adopt using them in future designs, thus reducing the costs of spaceflight. This research first conducted two radiation effects screening campaigns to study the viability of using commercial parts in low Earth orbit. A statistical algorithm to aid in planning screening campaigns for commercial electronics is also provided. Finally, this research presents a generic test bench platform which is capable of accommodating various part families to facilitate rapid, cost-effective radiation effects screening. The data obtained from the research provided evidence to suggest that utilization of commercial parts in space is feasible. The algorithm provides methodology to aid in planning screening campaigns such that sample sizes can be selected based on a variety of factors, including part parameter control data. The test bench was developed to aid in conducting the two screening campaigns and provided a proof of concept that generic testing platforms utilizing plug-and-play functionality can be effective in enabling researchers to conduct cost-effective screening campaigns. Utilization of the screening algorithm and test bench platform will enable the space industry to effectively certify commercial off-the-shelf electronics for use in low Earth orbit.
Radiation Effects, Commercial Off the Shelf Electronics, Total Ionizing Dose, Single Event Effects, Testbench, Reconfigurable, Algorithm, Test Platform