NEMICA is a UK collaborative research and development project between Microsemi, Moog and the Universities of Bristol and Southampton. The project aims to develop reprogrammable memories and gate arrays based on Nano-Relay technology that are capable of withstanding long term exposure to 225°C and/or 100Mrads.
The primarily target application will be aerospace servo-valve actuator systems but the technology has markets in space, transportation and down hole drilling.
Electronic sensing and processing underpin the complex aerospace control procedures that manage flight and enable safety and security. These components operate under extreme temperatures and elevated levels of radiation requiring special fabrication techniques and shielding that ultimately provide limited capability, affect performance and increase cost. The objective is to demonstrate electronic components for aerospace based on nano-electromechanical relays, that can withstand levels of radiation that are two-orders of magnitude higher, at temperatures that are twice as much as the best performing radiation-hardened components currently on the market. This step change in harsh-environment capability allows processing elements to be located much closer to sensing elements, greatly improving performance and efficiency of closed-loop control systems, drastically reducing shielding requirements and constraints on form-factor, increasing the functionality for a given footprint and generally expanding the fundamental limit at which electronic components in air and spacecraft can operate.