SPIN: Hardware and Software System Development for Single-Event Effects Testing at Radtest Ltd

Space Placements in INdustry scheme (SPIN)

8 weeks Harwell, UK

Uploaded 20 Apr 2021

Job Description

Company Description:

 Radtest Ltd (formerly Cobham RAD Europe Ltd) provides a comprehensive offering of radiation testing services and advice to customers in the space, nuclear, high-energy physics and industrial sectors. We have a focus on assessing the suitability of highly integrated devices, such as processors and FPGAs, for use in the natural space radiation environment, but also cover applications from materials used in nuclear reactors to medical scanners and qualifying wafer lots of discrete components. Whilst primarily a service business, we also manufacture and sell SEE test systems that can be used to screen components prior to full heavy ion testing in a cyclotron or simply as a risk mitigation technique for low-cost missions. Under the brand SEREEL2, this is a high quality, industrially rugged design of instrument, providing the most stable and reliable laser SEE test system on the market. Radtest Ltd is an independent SME located in the UK space hub at Harwell.

Project Description: 

Dealing with radiation effects is one of the most challenging aspects of operating electronics in the space environment. International standards exist to define a consistent and reliable methodology for radiation testing but this is perceived as expensive and time consuming. Few small satellites and virtually no CubeSats undertake any form of radiation testing. Laser SEE testing is much quicker and cheaper than testing in a cyclotron, explaining the rapid growth in popularity of this approach. 

Our SEREEL2 system has proved popular and we have several design improvements to be implemented during 2021. Based at Harwell, we anticipate that the SPINtern will be able to contribute in the following ways: 

  • Optimisation of the optical design 
  • Selection of optical elements with better performance and lower cost 
  • Improvement of the user interface (MATLAB)
  • Obtaining test data on real components to verify the system performance 
  • Data analysis
  • Report writing

 In addition, there is the possibility of involvement in other test campaigns undertaken by the company, depending on contracts secured nearer the time.

Person Specification

Applicant Specification: 

Applicant should have sound practical skills, attention to detail, reliability Have a partially or fully completed first degree, probably in electronic engineering or physics, with strong optics or laser content

Minimum Requirements: 

At current university studies (ideally at masters or PhD level) involving at least one of the following topics: optics, lasers, optomechanical design, MATLAB coding experience 

Preferred Additional Requirements: 

Have more than one of the above topics