CPS Technologies is a manufacturer and supplier of materials solutions and products that combine metals and ceramics. The company aims to help provide solutions that provide improved performance and greater reliability through the combination of these materials. Metal matrix composites (MMCs) are a class of materials that makes up one of CPS’ main materials solutions.
These materials have unique properties including higher stiffness, improved thermal conductivity, and thermal expansion matching. The CPS AlSiC (aluminum-silicon carbide) products are ideal for use in heat sinks, flip chip lids, optoelectronic housings, microprocessor lids, and more. Earlier this month, CPS announced that it had completed and shipped AlSiC-based parts that were intended to be used in the spectrometer-based methane sensing system of the MethaneSAT satellite program.
CPS has provided AlSiC-based components to be used in the MethanSAT satellite program for methane emission monitoring. Image used courtesy of MethaneSAT
AlSiC is an MMC that combines both metal aluminum and ceramic silicon carbide. This combination allows for the creation of products with desirable properties including good thermal conductivity and a compatible thermal thermal expansion for thermal management. In addition to its thermal properties, AlSiC is known to be very lightweight, which is a key quality for terrestrial and space-borne aircraft. The material also has a favorable stiffness-to-weight ratio. For flip chip and microprocessor lids, this property helps to control warping or bowing during assembly to improve solder attachment.
The MethaneSAT System
MethaneSAT will be used to measure the level of greenhouse gas emissions given off by oil and gas operations from almost any location on Earth. MethaneSAT will be able to cover a 200-kilometer (124-mile) view path and pass over target regions every few days. Quantitative data concerning emissions will be collected and recorded. This will allow companies from around the world to identify, manage, and reduce their methane emissions.
The MethaneSAT team hopes to motivate industry and government to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. High-resolution quantification of methane emissions can help companies who are setting goals for reduced emissions and putting methane policies in place, to observe and act on unwanted changes in methane emissions that are being released from their facilities.
Depiction of the MethaneSAT satellite in space. Image used courtesy of MethaneSAT
In a recent news release, President and CEO of CPS, Grant Bennett, commented “CPS is pleased and honored to be participating in this historic program. The MethaneSAT program could have a major impact on significantly reducing the unnecessary release of methane into the atmosphere. We are also pleased that participation in this program has allowed us to work with Ball Aerospace, the primary flight system integrator and instrument provider for the MethaneSAT program.”
CPS AlSiC components have been integrated into other space projects including the Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover, the International Space Station and, the latest generation of GPS satellites (GPS III) for the U.S. Space Force.
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