Thales Alenia Space and partners announced today the launch of PROMISE (PROgrammable MIxed Signal Electronics), a 3-year project to develop integrated circuits for space and related applications.
Conducted through the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Research & Innovation program, PROMISE aims to free European companies from dependence on foreign-sourced semiconductors.
The space market is increasingly trending towards satellite miniaturization and mass production for constellations, drastically reducing production costs and accelerating development cycles. These trends, combined with initiatives to reduce launch costs, will make space more accessible to the independent private sector, scientists, academia and the population at large.
The PROMISE project is aiming to develop key enabling digital technologies by fostering a wholly European-based ecosystem to ensure the continent’s competitiveness and independence. It will provide the space community with a flexible mixed-signal ASIC2 design, via a production and testing ecosystem built on a library of space-qualified radiation-hardened building blocks.
This ecosystem will support the development of complete mixed-signal System on Chip (SoC) solutions at a fraction of their current cost for the next generation of space data handling and data processing units. In turn, these units will become the core of new space missions for telecommunications, navigation, Earth observation and exploration.
These new PROMISE-based circuits will position the European space industry at the forefront of cost-competitive solutions and enable participating companies to take a leading role in 21st century space projects.
Thales Alenia Space in Spain is leading the PROMISE consortium, along with major satellite manufacturer Thales Alenia Space in France, plus the innovative small businesses ISD (Greece) and MENTA (France), and the R&T institutes IMEC (Belgium), IT (Portugal) and VTT (Finland).
The PROMISE project was officially kicked off in Tres Cantos (near Madrid) on January 24, 2020. The final results will be presented to end-users and the general public in a workshop scheduled for the second half of 2022.