Client :

Founded in 1983, AMOS – Advanced Mechanical and Optical Systems, is a Belgian company specialised in the design and manufacture of very-high-accuracy optomechanical systems for :
• Professional astronomy systems: telescopes, components and instrumentation for many of the world’s largest observatories.
• Space systems: on-board installations for satellites, probes and space shuttles – telescopes, mirrors, mounts, frameworks and mechanisms.
• Terrestrial satellite test equipment to validate satellites or payloads under space conditions prior to launch: vacuum chambers, thermal panels and ‘artificial stars’ (collimators).

Project :

Development of an Electrical Ground Support Equipment (EGSE) for evaluation of a custom developed 2D sensor provided by SOFRADIR working in the 0.7 to 5µm spectral range.
The EGSE must allow to control the sensor evaluation system and capture image data within National Instrument Labview© environment used by AMOS to automate the test/characterization campaign. 


Challenge(s) :

The final system will operate in vacuum, so the sensor evaluation system must be tested in a vacuum chamber. This means relatively long control & data interconnects with the EGSE that must also cross the vacuum chamber feedthrough, while the sensor evaluation system interfaces are designed for direct attachment of the control/acquisition system.

Solution :

A custom electronics board, able to operate in vacuum conditions, was designed to locally provide clean power rails to the sensor evaluation system and export control & data interfaces over ~10 m through the chamber feedthrough to the external EGSE. Conversion of the sensor data output interface to standard CameraLink is also provided to allow seamless capture of images with off-the shelf frame grabber equipment operated in a convenient Labview© environment.