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COTS quartz crystal units - up-screening for space applications

Bernd Neubig



The generic ESCC specification ESCC3501 defines the qualification procedure for quartz crystals use in “classical” space applications. The cost for crystals manufactured along this specification is very high and lead times are long. It limits the availability and the variety of available packages, namely with regard to small SMD packages.

Furthermore, many classical space crystal spec requests to use swept quartz material for improved radiation hardness, which is a heavy cost driver. In our paper we will compare the performance of swept quartz vs. unswept modern quartz material. We will present procedures for up-screening of COTS-crystals at different screening levels, depending on the application and acceptable cost.

These up-screening procedures are successfully applied in a number of space projects.
ALTER TECHNOLOGY is a quality driven company providing procurement, engineering and test services for electronic components and systems, within space and harsh environment markets.