Space Technology & Calibration Laboratories

Space, solar and atmospheric radiation is a key factor in the sun-space-earth research and the high-technology that has to deal with or rely on it. Think of communication and navigation high-tech systems. This explains why there is a large interest in ground- and space based instruments measuring the electromagnetic radiation. However, a production line for scientific and technical instruments doesn't exist. Science and technological projects spanning several years are set up to develop a tailored instrument. Moreover, inventing an instrument from scratch is sort of hard and it is silly that each instrument is doomed to go through the same children-diseases and ageing illness dealing with stubborn hard- and software problems. But, the Space Technology & Calibration Laboratories (STCL) comes at its rescue!

STCL overviewSTCL bundles the expertise and laboratory facilities present in the Solar-Terrestrial Centre of Excellence such that adequate support to a team developing an instrument can be given. The STCL knows how to fully characterise an instrument and has an idea on how its performance and ageing is influenced while flying through a hostile environment like space. The STCL is familiar with the synchrotron facilities in Berlin and the cyclotron in Louvain-la-Neuve where an instrument is checked to be launch and space proof, resistant to harmful particle impacts and where the measured spectrum is mapped. The laboratories help to understand how an instrument compares with other instruments and references such that the data can be completely understood and fully exploited. The path towards the instrument calibration!

The offered support will even improve in the future as experiences are being collected and form the basis for new technologies supporting the next generation of scientific instruments.

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