Space Asics' Products

Mixed signal Rad-Hard devices by SPACE-ASICS

The SPACE-ASICS devices are generic, ITAR free, all-European products, with all the robustness necessary for operation in space. Their development has successfully solved several VLSI design issues for proper electrical operation and strict space qualification, including: high performance, low power, mixed signal cross talk, substrate noise, auto-zeroing techniques, design for testability, radiation hardness to Total Ionizing Dose (TID) and Single Event Effects (SEE), temperature and power supply compensation, etc.

The SPACE-ASICS devices are Mixed Signal, Low Power, Rad-Hard developments, which contain in the same chip a number of optimized functions, such as: DSE (Differential to Single Ended) input stage, Ultra-stabilized Current Source and Voltage Reference, High Resolution ADC core, Digital unit (Memory and parallel/serial Interface), Control & Command.

SPACE-ASICS has focused on two lines of products:

  1. 1) Low speed, low power, Rad-Hard, sensor data acquisition ASICs suitable for S/C housekeeping, propulsion system control, etc.

  2. 2) Medium to high speed, Rad-Had ASICs for CMOS and CCD Image Sensor data acquisition built around 12-bit to 16-bit ADC modules at 20Msps.

The following ASICs are noted in particular:


A mixed-signal Rad-Hard Sensor Interface ASIC with a 14-bit ADC for interfacing strain gauge type of sensors (pressure, displacement, force). It can handle up to 6 PTs simultaneously and measure up to 8 Single Ended signals. The SIF-ASIC performs all the tasks associated with sensor interfacing, including sensor biasing (with constant current or constant voltage), signal conditioning, ADC quantization and digital data transmission to a micro-controller through I2C or SPI interface. The device can also be used for Temperature Measurements in 12 channels. The SIF-ASIC was tested for TID (at ESTEC) and SEE (at UCL/HIF and RADEF/Jyvaskyla). It can withstand more than 1 MRad of TID. It is immune to SELs and SEFIs up to at least an LET level of 81.6 MeV/mg/cm2 and it is SEU free up to an LET of 52.9 MeV/mg/cm2.

FM-SIF devices assembled in CQFP100 have completed successfully Lot Acceptance Tests according to ESCC9000 and are available to users both as packaged devices and bare dies.

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A mixed signal Rad-Hard ASIC to provide telemetry of essential measurements of the spacecraft “health”, without support of the spacecraft computer or instrument control units. 

Its overall functionality is to autonomously perform:
-      Sequential scanning and sampling of 32 Differential Analog & 16 Differential Digital Inputs.
-      Conversion of the Analog inputs to Digital values by a 12-bit ADC with a built-in Rad-Hard Voltage Reference
-      Formatting of the sampled data into Space Packets & output on the built-in CAN or PacketWire interface

The device can also be used as a Remote Terminal Unit (RTU) in data acquisition systems and housekeeping in space instrumentation. It can measure up to 32 temperatures (with the help of NTCs or PRTs, or the AD590 transducer). it can also be used for TID monitoring through a RADFET. The ETM-ASIC has been tested to be Rad-Hard to TID > 1Mrad (at the ESTEC Radiation Testing Facility). The device is immune to SEL &SEFI to> 68 MeV/mg/cm2 SEU free up to an LET of 42 MeV/mg/cm2.

FM-ETM devices assembled in CQFP256 packages have passed successfully Lot acceptance tests according to ESCC9000 and are available to users.

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A minaturized Remote Terminal Unit (RTU)

A miniaturized Remote Terminal Unit (RTU) was developed, based on the Essential Telemetry (ETM) ASIC and an aluminium stand-alone housing, equipped with connectors and mounting feet.
The unit is capable of supporting the ETM functionalities on board spacecraft and allows for: 
-     Power to be provided to the ETM device and the associated support electronics. 
-     Interfacing measurement channels of the ETM ASIC to the mini spacecraft. 
-     Interfacing the PacketWire and CAN communication interfaces of the ETM ASIC to the OBC or any other subsystem. 
-     Time information signals to be provided to the ETM ASIC.  

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16-bit ADC ASIC

SPACE-ASICS has developed a rad-hard 16-bit ADC ASIC, including an Analog Front End (AFEND) suitable for CCD and CMOS Sensor Interface.

The device is currently at EM prototype level.

Key Characteristics

  • Sampling Rate: 0.1 to 20Msps
  • No missing codes
  • Monotonicity
  • INL: ±2LSB
  • Power Consumption: 86mW
  • Temperature Drift: 35 ppm/degC
  • CDS Timing: 4 to 46ns


  • CCD and CMOS Image Sensor Readout
  • Space science Instrumentation
  • Atomic Clocks
  • Radar Applications
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SPACE-ASICS has fabricated a rad-hard, mixed signal, Analog Front End, EM prototype ASIC for Multichannel Imagers for Space Applications.

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A number of useful stand-alone by-products have been derived from critical subsystems of the above key products, which can be provided as fabricated ASICs or IP cores:

BP-1)  Rad-Hard Bandgap Voltage Reference

A Rad-Hard Bandgap Referenceis one of the most difficult parts to find for a number of space applications. The Voltage reference developed by SPACE-ASICS is stable to 1mV over -55 to 125 deg C with a Temperature coefficient of < 3 μV/degC @ 1 Mrad

BP-2)  Rad-Hard Instrumentation Amplifier

The Rad-Hard Instrumentation Amplifier developed by SPACE-ASICS has adjustable gain (10 – 64 dB) suitable for small differential signal measurements.

BP-3)  Rad-Hard CAN Controller

BP-4)  Rad-Hard Temperature Monitor

The SA Monitor is able to perform Temperature Measurements in 32 channels with increased accuracy. Various temperature sensors PRTs, NTCs, temperature transducers (AD590) are supported

BP-5)  Rad-Hard 12-bit ADC

BP-6)  Rad-Hard 14-bit ADC

BP-7) Rad-Hard DLL for Timing Generation

BP-8) Rad-Hard Time Interleaved 12-bit 320 Msps ADC.

The SPACE-ASICs devices constitute a niche technology for Europe and a key element in the Greek effort to participate in ESA activities.