Vacuum, TVAC tests and Outgassing.

Thermal vacuum testing consists on thermal cycling and bakeout.

Thermal bakeout is a requirement imposed by the launcher to “clean” the satellite prior to launch to make sure that our hardware will not contaminate other satellites.

This is particularly important when using COTS components (with plastic packaging) and optical payloads, since the volatiles desorbed by plastic packaging can be deposited on optical elements.

A Quartz Crystal Microbalance (QCM) can be used to measure the mass desorbed. A cold trap can also be used to perform afterwards a chemical analysis and find out which are the components that are desorbing volatiles .

Internal volume: several chambers, up to 70cm3.

Quartz Crystal Microbalances for molecular contamination and outgassing measurements during bake-out tests
Cold trap to collect volatiles for later chemical analysis

Features thermal:
Vacuum
Solar simulator
Higher temperature [K]: 473.0
Lower temperature [K]: 123.0
Feedthroughs: Wide variety of electrical, optical, RF, High power, linear and rotary motion vacuum feed-throughs
Vacuum limit [hPa] [mbar]: <10e-6mbar
Project heritage: CURIOSITY, BEPI COLOMBO, SOLAR ORBITER, JUICE
Keywords: TVAC, termal vacuum, termal cycling, bakeout, outgassing, space testing , cubesat