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Sensors for Satellite Testing

PCB’s measurement expertise for satellites and their components includes four main areas; vibration testing in thermal vacuum conditions, force limited vibration (FLV) testing, pyroshock testing for stage separation and launch induced acoustic stress testing.

Low Outgassing accelerometers and cables withstand exposure to the high vacuum level of a space environment. Since most satellites are instrumented during assembly, PCB’s low outgassing sensors and cables can be cycled through thermal vacuum chambers, used for subsequent vibration testing and then fly without the risk of releasing contaminants from outgassing.

PCB’s Pyroshock Series 350 ICP® mechanically isolated, electrically filtered pyroshock accelerometers are ideal for measuring harsh pyroshock events such as found in metal-to-metal impact, explosive bolts, impact tools, and stage separation testing. Series 350 shock accelerometers range from 5000 to 100,000 g.

Force limited vibration (FLV) test systems from PCB meet the requirements for limiting the reaction force between the shaker and unit under test in random vibration testing. The use of piezoelectric, 3-component force sensors facilitates easy and accurate measurement of the input force.

PCB® prepolarized ICP® microphones are used for acoustics stress testing either in reverberant acoustic test chambers or with a direct field acoustic test system, outdoor on a launch pad with water resistant capabilities, or during flight to record high dB noise from rocket engines or airflow.