OLSZTYN, POLAND – A Zortax 3-D printed electrical circuit made on the company’s Endureal printer will be tested onboard the WISA Woodsat CubeSat in low earth orbit.
WISA Woodsat is reportedly the first satellite made from birchwood and is scheduled for launch at the end of 2021 from New Zealand.
With the support of the European Space Agency, Zortrax developed a composite 3-D printing technology that enables fabricating space-ready parts with built-in polymeric-based electrical circuits.
Zortrax used the Endureal to make Z-PEEK structures with embedded, electrically conductive paths printed with electrically conductive PEEK supplied by ESA. The company reportedly brought printing temperatures to 400°C for standard and conductive PEEK blends with no adverse effect on conductivity.
Conductivity in 3-D printed paths reached 0.8 S/m at 30V, an eight times improvement over the course of nine months, the firm says. Zortrax used a Z-Suite feature to change the path followed by an Endureal printing head, eliminating gaps.
Zortrax is currently working with ESA on two new research projects.