AVX Corp. has announced that, after several years of extensive testing, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has approved its space-level X7R base metal electrode (BME) multilayer ceramic capacitors (MLCCs) for use in US military and aerospace applications under the criteria of the S-311-P-838 specification. This specification defines the requirements for high reliability, ceramic dielectric, multilayer, base-metal electrode, fixed value chip capacitors for high reliability space applications, in addition to the processing verification and inspections required by assemblies used in flight, and officially makes AVX the first (and currently only) supplier of BME capacitors approved for use in US space applications.

Exhibiting capacitance voltage (CV) capabilities superior to those of precious metal electrode (PME) MLCCs, which have long been the standard for the global aerospace industry, AVX's space-level BME MLCCs provide the extremely high reliability performance required by the space industry while also delivering higher capacitance values in significantly smaller cases sizes, enabling reductions of board space, weight, and component count, which directly translate into launch cost savings.

Featuring Flexiterm® terminations, AVX's space-level X7R BME MLCCs also provide considerably enhanced resistance to mechanical stress by allowing for more board flexure than standard terminations, especially in large case sizes. Currently available in five case sizes spanning 0603 to 1812 and three capacitance tolerances (±5%, ±10%, and ±20%), the series is rated for 16 to 100V and 2.2nF to 8.2µF, and is ideal for I/O filtering and bulk storage in the switch mode power supplies (SMPS) in space and satellite communications, military defense and weapons, and radar systems.

AVX's space-level BME MLCCs in case sizes 0603 to 1812 are also the first such capacitors approved for use in European Space applications by virtue of having recently been added to the European Space Association's (ESA's) Qualified Parts List (QPL) under the criteria of the European Space Components Coordination's (ESCC's) 3009/041 specification. The series' 0402 and 2220 parts are still in the midst of QPL evaluation, and a separate announcement will be issued upon approval.