29, June 2016

ESA Open Invitation To Tender AO8701
Open Date: 10/06/2016
Closing Date: 09/09/2016 13:00:00

Status: ISSUED
Reference Nr.: 15.1QM.09
Prog. Ref.: TRP
Budget Ref.: E/0901-01 – TRP
Tender Type: C
Price Range: 200-500 KEURO
Products: Satellites & Probes / Materials / Non-metallic
Technology Domains: Materials and Processes / Materials Processes / Coating
Establishment: ESTEC
Directorate: Directorate of Technical & Quality Manag
Department: Product Assurance and Safety Department
Division: Materials & Components Technology Division
Contract Officer: Magne-Lie, Karine
Industrial Policy Measure: C1 – Activities in open competition limited to the non-Larg…
Last Update Date: 10/06/2016
Update Reason: Tender issue

Currently in the aviation and spacecraft industry, aluminium surfaces need to be treated for corrosion protection, or are coated with primers for subsequent painting or structural bonding. It is possible to combine properties so that primers have the function of corrosion protection as well as bonding. However, no primer is universal and in many cases masking of dedicated surface areas is required to prepare for different applications. Especially the long-term preservation of the primed surface allows to perform structural bonding of brackets, heat pipes, inserts, temperature sensor and heaters at a later stage. There are various systems on the market in Europe, but none of them is universally applicable. A typical primer that is currently used is the Green BR127, that has excellent long-term performance and corrosion protection properties, but a low emissivity and it is not electrically conductive. A supplier (in France) already offers several primers but they are not suitable to be used as thermal control coating. Other paints produced by this supplier for thermal control, cannot provide a structural interface for bonding. In the United States, companies have developed the so called black BR, which is a carbon doped primer. A thin layer creates a high emissivity and ESD free surface that is suitable for structural bonding. A US company, AeroCoat, produces several Anti static Conductive Black Epoxy coating for the Aeronautical industry. These coatings are available through a European supplier. However, there is no indication if the coatings are suitable for space applications and if there are guarantee to remain ITAR free. In addition, there is no guarantee that any of these products are compliant in long-term to REACH, i.e. free of substances of very high concern such as hexavalent chrome and a variety of solvent. With a dedicated European development it can be guaranteed that such a multifunctional primer is ITAR free and not facing obsolescence by environmental regulations such as REACH and thus creating a sustained business case. Deliverables will include samples of the primer developed together with associated documentation. This primer would facilitate spacecraft manufacturing since masking is no longer required, thermal radiation exchange will be improved and the ESD at panel level will no longer be an issue. In addition, during the course of the activity, the bonding strength versus the thickness of the primer will be measured as well as the corresponding emissivity and electrical resistivity. This would allow to tailor processes for application demanding higher structural strength with lower emissivity or higher emissivity with lower structural strength. Procurement Policy: C(1) = Activity restricted to non-prime contractors (incl. SMEs). For additional information please go to EMITS news “Industrial Policy measures for non-primes, SMEs and RD entities in ESA programmes”.

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