The process starts by creating 3D models of the blankets, making sure that the critical areas of the spacecraft of subsystem are fully covered by the MLI.
Because every space mission comes with its own set of challenges and requirements, making sure the blankets survive the harsh environment of the mission is part of the MLI supply. With is national and international network of test houses, HPS can test its blankets under a large variety of thermal and mechanical environments.
Much like a tailor-made suit, the MLI blankets need to be fitted to the actual hardware. This is achieved by fit checking paper models to the actual flight hardware (at Customer premises) or by manufacturing representative mock-ups in Portugal.
Manufacturing of the actual blankets takes place at HPS facility in Porto. Here, at its ISO 6 cleanroom, HPS highly specialized manufacturing staff produce the complete blanket, test it, inspect it and package it, ready for shipment to the Customer in dedicated transport containers.
At the Customer premises, HPS staff integrates its blankets onto the spacecraft or subsystem making this the final step in our MLI production line.