Clean Environments supplies Clean Cube to Airbus Space Systems for the European Space Agency’s Solar Orbiter satellite.
Cheshire-based cleanroom supplier, Clean Environments, (a division of Moorfield Nanotechnology Limited) has provided a customised ISO 5 Clean Cube cleanroom for use in a special contamination control environment constraining particulate, molecular, electromagnetic and magnetic contamination as needed for the European Space Agency’s Solar Orbiter satellite mission.
The Clean Cube will protect the state-of-the-art instrument and sensor assemblies designed for the Solar Orbiter during its critical assembly, integration and testing programme.
Solar Orbiter which is set for launch by a NASA supplied launch vehicle in February 2019 will study the Sun’s heliosphere and observe it in unprecedented detail to uncover its inner workings and to unmask the secrets of the solar wind.
It will be launched on an Atlas V rocket and approach the Sun to within 62 solar radii or 42 million km.
From this vantage point, it will be ideally positioned to observe our star at unprecedented resolution (70 km/pixel) and analyse its heliosphere in fine detail.
Solar Orbiter will also acquire imagery and data from the Sun’s polar regions and from the side not visible from Earth. The main aim of these measurements will be to identify the underlying processes driving the solar wind, the stream of particles continuously escaping the Sun.
To fulfil its mission, Solar Orbiter will combine in-situ measurements in the satellite’s immediate environment with remote-sensing observations.
“We have instruments that are highly sensitive to contamination which could affect their capabilities and performance in space. The Clean Cube was selected as it provides the high levels of cleanliness required and its flexible design allows it to be re-sited for future programmes, as required.”Engineering Manager at Airbus in Stevenage, Lester Waugh