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5 eV Atomic Oxygen Testing Services

PSI offers 5 eV Atomic Oxygen Testing for LEO Operations

Tunable 2 – 11 eV Atomic Oxygen Source for LEO Testing

PSI utilizes its FASTTM laser detonation technology to produce a high flux/fluence beam of 5 eV atomic oxygen (AO) to measure the erosion rate of materials under consideration for use in Low Earth Orbit (LEO). The FAST source is recognized as the gold standard in testing materials for erosion by 5 eV AO encountered in LEO. FASTTM provides accelerated testing/qualification of materials with 1 day of testing providing up to the equivalent of the AO fluence experienced in 140 days at the International Space Station (ISS: 400 km altitude). PSI provides quotes for AO testing based upon the quantity and size of test articles, which determines the needed exposure area (100 – 2000 cm2), and the required AO fluence. Typically the specified AO fluence ranges from 2×1020 to 2.5×1021 AO/cm2 corresponding to ~ 1 month to 1 year at the ISS.

Key Features

  • AO fluences to 1021 /cm2 routine
  • Available AO velocity range: 5 – 12 km/s (2 eV – 11 eV)
  • Treatment area: 100 – 2000 cm2
  • Sample temperature controlled: 0 – 80 C routine
  • Mass loss precision: 1 µg/10 µg for samples weighing less than 250 mg/1000 mg, respectively
  • Source operates at 3 Hz for AO testing
AO fluence per pulse and exposure diameter vs. distance from the throat of the AO source nozzle.

AO fluence per pulse and exposure diameter vs. distance from the throat of the AO source nozzle.

AO Test 2
Sample pallet exposed to AO at a 31 cm axial distance.

Benefit to Customer

Test/qualify materials for LEO missions without the time and expense needed for a flight test

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