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10th December 2019, Russia

Technologiya composites for Russian space mission

© Rostec.

© Rostec.

Eugene Gerden reports

A three-metre-wide composite frame, designed by specialists at Romashin Technologiya for the needs of the Russian Spectrum-RG astrophysical observatory, has proved its efficiency during the first stage of tests.

According to Oleg Yevtushenko, executive director of Rostec, the parent company of Technologiya, the new composite frame will become a shield from the sun for the X-ray telescope and other high-precision equipment currently used at Spectrum-RG, a Russian–German high-energy astrophysics space observatory which was launched in July 2019.

The use of the newly-designed composite frame is of particular importance for the entire Spectrum space mission, since due to the specifics of its orbital position one of its sides of the observatory will be constantly exposed to the sunlight while the opposite one will remain in shade, cause an uneven temperature load on the device.

Oleg Yevtushenko, executive director of Rostec, the parent company of Technologiya © Rostec.

Oleg Yevtushenko, executive director of Rostec, the parent company of Technologiya © Rostec.

The heat-resistant composite materials will protect the telescope and its structural elements from the risks of thermal deformation. This is especially important given the expected temperature difference in the range of 180°C to minus125°C.

 “As part of the Spectrum-RG project, our experts were tasked with creating a rigid frame for the ART-XC telescope, as well as developing a number of other structural elements for the device that can withstand extreme operating conditions,” said Yevtushenko. “The composite components have been created to provide lightness, strength and dimensional stability during cooling and heating of the structure.”

To date, the spacecraft has completed a hundred-day flight to its point of deployment in the orbit, after which the main scientific programme of the observatory will begin.

Technologiya has also signed an agreement with Sukhoi  Corporation, a major Russian aircraft manufacturer, for the production of composite parts and assemblies for the Su-57, the Russian fifth-generation fighter.

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