Fully qualified Flash Memory optimizes Satellite Data Storage

By on Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

The flash memory Solid-State Recorder (SSR) products of Airbus Defense and Space have passed all NASA space qualification test requirements successfully. In addition, the company’s flash-based SSR has exceeded 20 months of operation in orbit onboard SPOT 6, the first commercial satellite to deploy this technology.

The Electronics Business Line of Airbus Defense and Space is the only company with a commercially available SSR with flash technology certified for space applications. For US customers, Airbus Defense and Space flash memory is qualified in accordance with NASA GSFC Parts Document EEE- INST-002.

“Flash Solid-State Mass Memory provides far greater storage capacity at a lower operating cost than SDRAM. The advantages have been confirmed on SPOT 6 where our flash SSR has a flawless track-record in an Earth observation mission,” explains Tim Pike, Product Manager for Payload Data Handling at Airbus Defense and Space Electronics.

“Achieving both NASA and ESA qualification standards assures customers worldwide that our flash technology is a viable choice for their next mission.”

Flash memory offers significant reduction in SSR size, weight and power consumption as well as substantial cost savings.

Compared with previous SSR generations based on SDRAM technology, SSR units based on flash technology typically provide 60% higher storage capacity with 2.5 times less mass and 5 times less size, while consuming 3.5 times less power.

The new NEMO SSR (on display at the Space Symposium in Colorado Springs, Colorado, from May 19-22, 2014) provides 0.5Tbit storage capacity in only 6.5Kg while consuming less than 10W in simultaneous record and replay operation. Since flash technology is non-volatile, the unit can be completely powered down while retaining the stored data.

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