The MIDAS (Micro Imaging Dust Analysis System) instrument jointly developed by IWF Graz (AT) and the Solar Space Division of ESA/ESTEC (NL) will flow on ROSETTA and will analyse the dust of the 46P/Wirtanen comet using an Atomic Force Microscope (AFM). A piezoelectric XYZ stage, used to scan the sample in 3 axis, is part of the instrument and has been fully designed and qualified under the ESA/ESTEC contract no13090/98/NL/MV. Two qualification models (EQM/QM) and two flight models (FM/FSM) have been integrated and fully tested within 18 months. The basic principle of the stage has been described in a previous paper. The XY stage includes a latch mechanism based on two Shape Memory actuators. This paper focuses on the lessons learned during the qualification campaign, especially on the testing activities and on the latch mechanism. The XYZ stage has followed a full qualification campaign including Thermal Vacuum cycles, Random Vibrations tests and lifetime tests. The latch mechanism has been designed and tested with the following features: easiness of locking and refurbishment operations, compatibility with the parallel two degrees of freedom mechanism, low shock device. It has been tested more than 20 times, including 4 tests in the worst case conditions (eg the most demanding power case at -20°C) and 2 times after a vibration test. The results and the parameters influencing the reproducibility are discussed. The functional performances have been assessed using a dedicated test bench. Comments are made on the measurements techniques used to get results independent from the drift effect displayed by the piezo components. The calibration work (static and gain of the position sensors) have played an important role during the testing activities. Several parameters (temperature, piezo drift effect and external forces acting on the stage and coming from the coarse approach mechanism) affects the static position. Because of the limited stroke range of reading of the capacitive sensors, some adjustments works have become necessary after the integration in the MIDAS instrument. The four identical models (EQM, QM, FM, FSM) have brought useful data for future piezo mechanisms, both on the integration's reproducibility and on the measurement techniques accuracy.
9th European Space Mechanisms and Tribology Symposium
- Pub Date:
- September 2001
- Rosetta Mission;
- Atomic Force Microscope