Emcore has won a contract worth approximately $5 million to manufacture, test, and deliver high-efficiency solar PV panels for NASA’s Global Precipitation Measurement spacecraft. The contract will be managed by MEI Technologies, which is the prime contractor for the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC).
The satellite-based GPM science mission will study global precipitation, including rain, snow, and ice. The launch of the spacecraft is scheduled for summer 2013.
The mission spacecraft solar arrays will be powered by Emcore’s latest generation, 30% efficiency class ZTJ multijunction gallium-arsenide solar cells, which will be produced and assembled into panels at the company’s manufacturing facilities located in Albuquerque, NM.
“We are very excited to earn this contract award from MEI Technologies and NASA Goddard Space Flight Center,” said Emcore’s COO, Christopher Larocca. “This award reaffirms Emcore’s position as the leading solar-panel supplier for space missions. Our proven manufacturing capability, technology leadership, and reliability heritage make Emcore the supplier of choice for demanding spacecraft power systems.”
Emcore says it is the largest manufacturer of highly efficient radiation-hard solar cells for space power applications. With a beginning-of-life conversion efficiency of 30% and the option for a patented, onboard monolithic bypass diode, the company’s multijunction GaAs solar cells can provide the highest power to interplanetary spacecrafts and earth-orbiting satellites.