Low Cost High Reliability Radiation Hardened Electronics System

Lead Participant: RADMOD RESEARCH LTD.


Robotic systems, including satellites and flying robots, or drones, are becoming increasingly widespread. One of the benefits of autonomous or semi-autonomous robots is that they can go to places where people can't go. For example, the radiation environment in space, due to cosmic radiation, or close to nuclear reactors, is dangerous for people - but also for microelectronic systems. Space-technology companies have well-established expertise in making satellites that can cope with space radiation, but the solutions are mostly very expensive and suited only to medium and large spacecraft. This means that they are not practical for widespread adoption in large numbers in other industries with similar radiation challenges. If the opportunities afforded by advanced microelectronic systems are to be exploited in low-cost space systems - so-called "nano-satellites" - or in other fields, for example nuclear protection, we need "radiation-hardened" electronics that are smaller, lighter - and cheaper. This project will combine space-systems expertise from the United Kingdom with microelectronics design and manufacture capability from China, to achieve that. The project will deliver a prototype of a generic electronic system, containing key elements required by all mobile robots, exploiting expertise radiation hardening by design validated by testing against each of the types of damaging radiation the system might receive. It will deliver a capability that can be exploited in a wide range of harsh environments.

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