Advanced Isolation Systems for Launch Vehicle Avionics

Period of Performance: 02/23/1998 - 02/09/2004


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

CSA Engineering, Inc.
2565 Leghorn Street
Mountain View, CA 94043
Principal Investigator

Research Topics


Launch vehicle avionics perform functions that are critical to the success of launch missions, yet they are subject to high-level shock and vibration environments. The main objective of Phase II is to develop advanced vibration isolation systems to meet the special needs of launch vehicle avionics, thereby increasing their reliability. Many of the avionics electronics generate substantial detrimental heat. Phase I demonstrated the feasibility of thermally-conductive isolation systems, i.e., isolators that can both vibration-isolate an avionics package while also conducting heat away. The strong need for thermally-conductive vibration isolators for avionics was reinforced during Phase I. However, three other needs came to light during our Phase I discussions whith launch vehicle manufacturers: (1) avionics isolation systems that are less sensitive to temperature than those currently available, (2) isolation systems for complete avionics equipment shelves, and (3) a design tool that can be used to design or select an optimum avionics isolation system. Not only will Phase II develop thermally-conductive isolators, thermally-insensitive isolators, avionics equipment shelve isolators, and a MATLAB-based design tool for avionics isolators, but Phase II will also design, test, and deliver flight-quailified isolation systems for the Orbital/Suborbital Program (OSP). Throughout this program, the overriding goal will be to prove this technology through flight.