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Plated textiles protect NASA’s Mars rover

Advanced Textiles, Products | April 1, 2009 | By:

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, Calif., runs diagnostic tests on spacecraft in special clean rooms. Even within these sterile spaces, however, NASA deploys portable shelters that protect equipment from electromagnetic or radio frequency interference during test procedures. The first such portable shielded enclosure met NASA’s stringent requirements with plated textiles from Shieldex Trading Inc., Palmyra, N.Y.

Shieldex PF35230CR is a fabric plated with nickel and tin over copper, giving it the ability to block 85 decibels of sound and 30 to 100 megahertz electromagnetic interference. The plated material can be cleaned to meet the criteria of a class 1000 clean room without sloughing or particle release. The enclosure panels are removable, interchangeable and have a fire-inhibiting outer layer. Custom doors include no magnets and a weighted floor seal, giving NASA the ability to test spacecraft (such as the Mars Science Laboratory rover) without interference. For more information, visit

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