Space

September 9, 2013

DUNMORE Aerospace Materials protect LADEE robotic lunar explorer

DUNMORE Corporation is protecting four science payload instrument packages carried aboard the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer space mission and the spacecraft itself.

DUNMORE’s multi-layered insulation materials defend electronics and other mission-critical technology from extreme temperatures between minus 195 degrees Fahrenheit to more than 300 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 125 degrees to plus 150 degrees Celsius) as the spacecraft travels to an orbit around the moon.

In addition, DUN-SHIELDô electrostatic dissipative films protected all four payload instruments and other components during assembly of the spacecraft.

The LADEE mission is to study the thin lunar atmosphere and the movement of microscopic lunar dust particles through it. Scientists expect to gain a better understanding of tenuous atmospheres that also exist around asteroids, inner planets and moons of Jupiter, Saturn and the outer planets.

This mission heralds a number of firsts. The U.S. Air Force’s Minotaur V ballistic missile, repurposed as a launch vehicle, carries a carbon fiber 850 pound reusable spacecraft designed and built at NASA Ames Research Center in California. The launch took place at the NASA Wallops Flight Facility, making it the first lunar mission to launch from Virginia. The Goddard Space Flight Center assumes responsibility for managing the science instruments on board and will host the first use of a high speed Lunar Laser Communications Demonstration. The LLCD will pass optical signals to earth at speeds rivaling terrestrial high-speed fiber-optic data rates. If the demonstration is successful, the LLCD may be deployed to relay mission data as well and could lead to the eventual obsolescence of radio signals for future space missions.

DUNMORE’s electrostatic dissipative films were used throughout the construction of the spacecraft to protect four key science payloads. In addition to the LLCD, an Ultraviolet and Visible Light Spectrometer, a Lunar Dust Experiment and a Neutral Mass Spectrometer (NMS) will collectively analyze the composition of the lunar atmosphere and the lunar dust it contains. DUNMORE’s ESD films were used during construction to protect against contamination and damage due to unwanted static and triboelectric charges. DUNMORE’s polyimide films, layered together to manufacture multi-layered insulation blankets protect the NMS and UVS as well as various flight systems from the rigors of extreme temperatures in space.

The LADEE mission is not only characterized by a first-ever reusable robotic spacecraft design, an entirely new laser communication technology and the smallest budget yet achieved for a lunar flight, but it also connects the Ames, Goddard and Wallops Centers together in a cooperative venture that promises to become a model for future missions.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Image courtesy of NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T Pyle

NASA’s Kepler reborn, makes first exoplanet find of new mission

Image courtesy of NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T Pyle The artistic concept shows NASA’s planet-hunting Kepler spacecraft operating in a new mission profile called K2. Using publicly available data, astronomers have confirmed K2&...
 
 
NASA illustration

NASA, planetary scientists find meteoritic evidence of Mars water reservoir

This illustration depicts Martian water reservoirs. Recent research provides evidence for the existence of a third reservoir that is intermediate in isotopic composition between the Red Planetís mantle and its current atmosphe...
 
 
Lockheed Martin photograph

Lockheed Martin-built MUOS-3 satellite encapsulated in launch vehicle fairing

Lockheed Martin photograph The U.S. Navy’s Mobile User Objective System-3 satellite (above) is encapsulated in its payload fairings for a scheduled Jan. 20, 2015 launch aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. MUOS ope...
 

 
NASA photograph

NASA’s Orion arrives back at Kennedy

NASA photograph NASA’s Orion spacecraft returned to the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida Dec. 18, 2014. The spacecraft flew to an altitude of 3,600 miles in space during a Dec. 5 flight test designed to stre...
 
 

NASA launches new Micro-g NExT for undergraduates

NASA is offering undergraduate students an opportunity to participate in a new microgravity activity called Micro-g Neutral Buoyancy Experiment Design Teams. The deadline for proposals is Jan. 28, 2015. Micro-g NExT challenges students to work in teams to design and build prototypes of spacewalking tools to be used by astronauts for spacewalk training in the...
 
 
launch1

Storm fails to quench liftoff of secret reconnaissance satellite

The fiery launch of an Atlas V (541), among the most powerful of the venerable Atlas family, briefly dispelled the gloom over Californiaís Central Coast on the evening of Dec. 12. A team of personnel from United Launch Allianc...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>