History and Performance of FEI Space-Class Oscillators
FREQUENCY ELECTRONICS INC MITCHEL FIELD NY
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An indispensable component of any space vehicle is the onboard master oscillator. The proper operation of the entire payload is dependent on the performance of the master oscillator or the onboard clock. Frequency Electronics, Inc. FEI has been a key supplier of high reliability oscillators for space applications since 1963, and in this paper we will present a short history of oscillators for space applications that include quartz-based oscillators, rubidium based oscillators, and integrated timingfrequency generating systems. We will also present achieved performance of key parameters such as aging, short-term stability, and low power consumption. Design considerations to mitigate the effects of natural radiation in the space environment will be discussed as well as strategies to minimize frequency drift to assure mission lifetimes of 20 years or more. Furthermore, to predict long-term frequency accuracy we will present data of unpowered oscillators that were manufactured between 1968 and 1985 for long term space missions that have been recently powered-on and tested. The presented data will provide empirical evidence that may be used to estimate the performance of quartz-based and rubidium-based oscillators in space.
- Humanities and History
- Electrical and Electronic Equipment
- Metallurgy and Metallography
- Unmanned Spacecraft