Interconnect solutions for New Space

1 Aug 2019

Ranging from ground testing and launchers to satellite platforms, payloads and planetary rovers, the list of applications in space for which the Axon’ Group can provide interconnect solutions is extensive.  But all have a common goal: the need for miniaturized, lightweight and reliable components. High data rates, high temperature, weight and space saving, resistance to severe environments and fast integration; these are the regular challenges encountered and overcome with Axon’s robustly designed space interconnect solutions.

Wires and cables for severe environments

For Axon’ Cable, the Space Odyssey started in the 1990s with the development of data links for the Ariane launcher.  Since then the company has continually gained expertise in a very demanding and rapidly evolving field.  Resistance to fluids or chemicals, high temperatures, radiation, these are some examples of technological challenges Axon’ can meet.  The company supplies a large range of wires and cables in compliance with, and beyond ESA standards. Lightweight and highly resistant, they have been designed to meet the challenging requirements of launchers and satellites including cabling both internal and external to the spacecraft, all common orbits and even cryogenic applications.  Axon’ experts have also developed antistatic, or atomic-oxygen (ATOX) resistant wires and cables for low earth orbits (LEO).  Insulated with different materials such as ETFE, special thermoplastic compounds designed by Axon’ Cable, irradiated polyolefin, polyurethane (TPU), and polyimide, our high-tech cables are able to meet the most demanding applications.

Ultra-fast connection and modularity

The rapidly emerging sector known as “New Space” now requires not only reliable components but also industrial solutions adapted to the rapid production of satellites in volume.  Aware of this requirement, Axon’ Cable has developed miniature connectors equipped with a user-friendly tool-less and fast-latching system which gives greater flexibility to the integrator.  A new range of Micro-D products equipped with the D-Click® fast latching system allows customers to use the Micro-D technology in space-constrained systems where access to the connectors is difficult. The company has also engineered Versatys®, a new concept of compact power connectors for space applications.  Compared with power D-Sub connectors, this new range of connectors gives rise to substantial space and weight saving.  With interchangeable lines (power contacts and wire), users can customize their own connectors.  Versatys® connectors can optionally also be equipped with the fast-latching D-Click system.  Both innovative connector types generate real time savings as no tooling is required for this operation.

Satellite cabling

From the choice of material or components, to the design, routing, manufacturing, test and product qualification, Axon’ offers a complete service for the cabling of spacecraft or rover vehicles.  2D or 3D cabling boards can be developed to ensure perfect integration at the customer’s facilities, for example where tolerances on length or the required routing are very tight.  Axon’ can also design the harness while working directly on a real scale mock-up provided by the customer.  The company is equipped with ISO 8 clean rooms with very stable temperature and humidity control, and has experience working with demanding bioburden requirements.  Axon’ manufacturing capability consists of highly skilled and experienced workers accredited to ESA and IPC standards. Axon’s space Engineering team well-versed in supporting such space projects with all appropriate reviews and documentation.