The New Space industry resorts to this way of saving. Such a shortcut obviously is cost-efficient, but it still invokes knowledgeable, educated technical decisions. It is not enough to accept some usually undefined risks. The cost of cost-saving has to be known.
Typical pass/fail criteria are not useful while no actual information about optoelectronic parts (mostly COTS) are operated in space environments or sometimes in ways for which were not designed. Detailed study of the degradation or failure modes may determine that not fully compliant devices may still be suitable for a certain application.
There is a trend to push toward the use of Automotive Grade 0, 1 EEE Components as preferred vs. Industrial Grade EEE Components.
The presentation walks through the AEC-Q100 (ICs) document, highlighting points to be scrutinized before making an educated decision.
It is obvious that many barriers must be overcome in order to reach fundamental confidence in COTS.
The following aspects are presented:
Resistance to Change Barrier.
The Risk Barrier.
The Obsolescence Barrier.
The Counterfeit Barrier.
The Lead-Free/ Tin Whiskers Barrier.
The policy for New Space has yet to be finalized. Meanwhile, the users are making their own decisions, which are not always technically justified.
The failure rate of CubeSats deserves substantial improvement. The lack of stricter regulation creates more and more serious space debris issues. Active deorbiting of satellites is essential. Some progress in the deorbiting domain is present in the work.
Invincible business decisions of the Component Manufacturers shape the EEE Component market, endangering long-term follow-up projects. Especially the Military/Space EEE Components minuscule market share is more vulnerable to business decisions.
The present policy has not yet fully accepted the COTS essence. The heavy testing burden has been moved from the Component Manufacturer to the user.
The official policy penalizes the use of COTS in Space by imposing not reasonable post procurement testing burden on the user,
The process of legitimization of use of EEE COTS Components in Military and Space materialized due to facing Global Developments.
The main evolution steps:
Exclusive use of MIL-SPEC/QPL/SPACE grade HI-REL hermetic EEE Components in Military and Space Applications.
Use of MIL-PRF/QML/SPACE grade HI-REL hermetic and non hermetic and COTS in Military Applications.
Use of MIL-PRF/QML/SPACE grade HI-REL hermetic and non hermetic and COTS in Military and Space Applications.