|The success of a space mission is always linked to the performance of technology. Fralock is a leading provider of flexible circuit solutions used in satellite solar arrays in support of some of the world’s largest satellite manufactures. Our products are found on a full range of missions across the military, civil and commercial space markets. Orbiting Earth in fixed and rotating wing applications as well as in body-mounted panels, our advanced solar panel products are used in flex-to-deploy and flex-to-fit as well as in static applications.
Flexible Solar Arrays (panels) are a primary source of electrical power for spacecraft. Whether driven by electrical propulsion or ever increasing communication bandwidth requirements, system power levels are escalating rapidly with the area of large arrays now measuring in the 10’s of square meters. This places greater emphasis than ever on the low mass, thin and compact features of Fralock’s flex circuits, not to mention the design and packaging benefits offered.
Our products’ ultra high reliability is the reason they have been selected to power many satellites now in orbit. Utilizing our advanced material and adhesiveless laminating technologies, our products have demonstrated indestructibility in severe gamma radiation environments while at the same time withstanding multi-life flex durability across the severe thermal conditions encountered in space.
Fralock’s ability to create large formats, combined with full folding characteristics, means that complex, single circuits many meters in length can be achieved that eliminate connections further adding to system reliability and reduce mass.
Many of our customers describe legacy designs so fragile that mere handling, let alone assembly work, compromises the product such that time consuming and expensive replacements are needed. Not so with Fralock’s circuits, that can be folded and creased with no degradation and no need for “spares” to reliably assure assembly.
We support our customer’s engineering departments by providing design and development expertise to individually optimize each flexible circuit for the application, resulting in the highest performance and lowest cost solution in the least amount of time.
All Polyimide, Adhesiveless Flexible, Rigid-Flex and Rigid
Fralock’s unique materials and adhesiveless lamination technology allows it to develop and produce a wide range ultra high reliability product that offers key advantages, including:
Fully Encapsulated All Polyimide Design Advantages
Robust Handling: Virtually eliminates fragility related assembly damage, rework and program delays.
Full Folding: May be tightly creased without delamination or fracture.
No Solder joints or Connectors: Continuous panels to 120” and Full Folding can result in continuous lengths to 100’s of feet without any unreliable connections.
Fine Line/Trace and Spacing: to 1 mil, allows compact design.
Low Mass: Superior materials, lamination, trace/spacing and connector elimination yields lower mass.
Exceptional Radiation Resistance: Retains physical, thermal, electrical and isolation properties throughout extended mission life.
Unsurpassed Reliability with All Polyimide Fully Encapsulated Designs
• All polyimide bonding eliminates the adhesive interface where most problems occur.
• Full encapsulation eliminates the voids around metallic traces that create performance variables and structural discontinuities that affect durability.
• Laminate bond strengths exceed substrate properties and that typically exceed 10 pli to metallic traces.
• Wide operational temperature range -269°C to +351°C (Tg)
Fralock can design, test and fabricate a single or multi-layer product to meet your needs as it has for industry leaders like Boeing, Lockheed Martin, JPL and NASA among others.
Characteristics and Features:
• Abrasion resistant
• Chemically inert
• Dielectric Strength up to 7000 volts/mil
• Glass transition temperatures up to 351°C (663°F)
• Low CTE, 30 ppm in-plane over operating temperature range (ASTM E831 )
• Meets specifications:
NASA outgassing requirements
Flammability requirements of UL94V-0 (UL file #E39505)
Inherently Halogen free
• Maintains its mechanical properties at extreme temperatures, from cryogenic -269°C (-516°F) to over 300°C (572°F)
• Monolithic polyimide construction with no adhesive weaknesses
• Readily modified by machining, drilling, laser machining
• Thermal & Dimensional Stability
• Thermal Cycling tested from -186°C to 150°C