The Electronic Workshop
The Electronic Workshop (EWS) undertakes the construction of flight electronic assemblies including wiring harnesses. Most of the assemblies are based on PCBs with an increasing amount of surface mount components.
Due to the relatively low volume and very high standards of work required, assembly is carried out using entirely manual techniques at this time. The staff have all undertaken training courses run by the European Space Agency (ESA) for hand soldering (and rework), surface mount assembly and crimp wiring construction.
Specific equipment for bending and cropping the leads of surface mount IC packages has been procured. Other specialist equipment includes Metcal soldering irons, with very good tip temperature stability, a de-golding solder bath and a stereo microscope with a rotating turret that allows solder joints to be inspected from every viewing angle, without moving the assembly.