3, August 2018

ESA Open Invitation to Tender AO9474
Open Date: 02/08/2018
Closing Date: 17/09/2018 13:00:00

Status: ISSUED
Reference Nr.: 18.133.08
Prog. Ref.: Technology Developme
Budget Ref.: E/0901-01 – Technology Developme
Tender Type: C
Price Range: 200-500 KEURO
Products: Satellites & Probes / Materials / Composite Materials / Matrix Structure: Epoxy / Satellites & Probes / Materials / Composite Materials / Reinforcement Material: Carbon Fibres / Satellites & Probes / Materials / Composite Materials / Matrix Structure: Cyanate Ester
Techology Domains: Structures / High Stability and High-Precision S/C Structures / Advanced Material Technologies for Stable Structures / Structures / Advanced Structural Concepts and Materials / Design and Verification Technologies
Establishment: ESTEC
Directorate: Directorate of Tech, Eng. & Quality
Department: Mechanical Engineering Department
Division: Structure and Mechanisms Division
Contract Officer: van Hilten, Linda
Industrial Policy Measure: N/A – Not apply
Last Update Date: 02/08/2018
Update Reason: Tender issue

Thin-ply products are becoming commercially available by European composite precursor material providers. E.g. thin-ply unidirectional and fabric prepregs are being produced with thicknesses 3 to 4 times lower than conventional prepregs. The providers announce preservation of stiffness, increase of strength by 20 % and stability improvement due to better homogeneity, resin-fiber micromechanical interactions and higher accuracy. Areal densities and thicknesses of unidirectional prepreg are declared as low as 15 gsm and 20 microns. The reduction of thickness allows for mass reduction by better tailoring the laminates during the structural design, especially of the loaded areas such as mechanical interfaces. It has been already understood in precursor activities that typical quasi-isotropic 3-ply laminates of conventional material are equivalent to 12-thin-ply laminates, preserving stiffness but with potential mass reduction and a clear improvement in strength. This requires confirmation for the several applications in sight, taking into account the specific design and performance requirements.Potential applications include spacecraft shear panels to be produced by prepreg technologies, cylinders produced by automatic processes such as tape placement, and specialized products such as solar array substrates, antenna reflectors and wave guides.In the case of highly demanding products such as antenna reflectors and mirrors, the additional aspects to investigate are the effect of thickness in depolarization, passive intermodulation and reflection losses.Phase 1 addressing the material characterization by samples at the level of prepreg product production and fibre or tape placement products,taking into account product requirements (mechanical, thermal and electrical).Phase 2 detailed design, manufacturing and testing of demonstrator models for two of the selected applications

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