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Space Rated DC/DC Converters

8 Mar 2011, 23:39 UTC
Space Rated DC/DC Converters
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The third and final DC/DC converter has successfully been integrated into the rover’s power system. These converters are essential to the rover functioning, as they convert the 28 volts of the rover’s battery into smaller voltages for the onboard electronics. This particular converter takes in battery voltage and provides five volts to the rover’s flight computer. These new International Rectifier DC/DC converters provide several advantages over the old converters that they replaced. Most importantly, they are space rated, and have been used successfully in space missions already. They also have a digital on/off pin, which allows a microprocessor to turn the converters on and off. This feature will be very helpful when putting the rover into hibernation. The IR converters have an analog voltage output that indicates the amount of current being drawn. This enables the power used by the rover to be monitored. This can be done using an analog to digital converter, which takes in the analog indicator voltage and converts it to a digital signal that can be read by a microprocessor.

Final touches on the DC/DC converter installation

The rover electronics before and after the installation of the new IR DC/DC converter

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