Multilayer Insulation (MLI) blankets provide passive thermal control to a variety of spacecraft, launch vehicles, and instruments in vacuum. They work by limiting the amount of radiative heat transfer through multiple layers of thin reflectors and spacer materials. AFM provides a wide range of MLI to the Aerospace community, using a combination of thin films, foils, and fabrics.
Our staff of engineers and technicians have extensive experience building, and custom fitting MLI for a wide variety of customers with both build-to-print and design-to-fit projects. Our facility is uniquely designed, with a flexible manufacturing system, to produce MLI blankets, of any shape and size, for use on spacecraft, launch vehicles, and cryogenic applications. Specifications for blankets should be provided along with drawings, templates, and/or CAD files. We can also translate file formats for use on our automated cutting system. We have procedures for handling both DPD and MBD requirements. We are skilled at manufacturing either sewn blankets with fabric surfaces or taped blankets with plastic layers. Various sewing and taping techniques can be employed, and combinations of each can be used to produce the best blanket required by your mission.
Our MLI blankets have been used on countless spacecraft and satellites, from Low Earth Orbit to Geostationary Orbit and beyond. AFM has produced MLI for “Big Science” missions, individual satellites and constellations of satellites as well as the International Space Station, which has MLI and shields on the lab, airlock, nodes, and various truss elements.
Our engineers will work with you to perform the appropriate trade studies, examining which materials, optical properties, and thickness will be best suited in a MLI blanket for your upcoming mission. Contact AFM today for details and specifications and see how we can help make your dream a reality.