Technology Applications, Inc. (TAI), headquartered in Boulder, Colorado, is the world's largest provider of thermal straps (often referred to as "flexible thermal links," "heat straps," "thermal shunts," or "thermal cables"). We offer the most comprehensive array of custom and standard model strap products in the industry, in addition to our strap testing services. Each year, we provide thousands of copper straps, and hundreds of graphite & carbon straps to customers from NASA, to JAXA, and ESA, and countless aerospace organizations, commercial electronics companies, national labs, and universities across the globe.
In addition to our thermal link / strap product lines, TAI also specializes in aerospace and commercial electronics thermal management systems and product development. Our engineering team is currently developing state of the art, high conductance, flexible heat exchangers for the US Military and international aerospace industry, in DoD SBIR Ph I, Ph I extension, and Ph II contracts, and via independent commercial aerospace programs.
What sets TAI apart?
Simply put: no one has the level of strap design or fabrication experience, nor produces the shear volume of custom and standard model thermal strap products, that TAI does. Further, not only are our strap products the most affordable in the industry, but they are actually designed and assembled by our experts. All straps are subject to numerous quality inspections throughout the manufacturing process, and undergo extensive finishing & cleaning procedures, to ensure our customers receive the highest quality straps available (and never something that was outsourced from other companies or machine shops, and simply repackaged). Finally, our CuTS® and GFTS® products also have spaceflight heritage, and our team has extensive experience with spaceflight programs (and the associated qualification and reporting requirements).
TAI's Flexible Thermal Link / Strap Products
TAI provides custom and 66 standard model, OFHC copper (99.99 - 99.998% pure), cabling / rope straps (CuTS®). All standard and custom straps now come standard with our proprietary, TAI OFHC UltraFlex™ copper cabling (offering the highest degree of flexibility, while maintaining the same diameter and thermal performance as our standard OFHC cu braid), and TAI now offers nickel and gold plating for all of our CuTS® products.
TAI's CuTS® are the most affordable copper rope/cabling straps commercially-available, and just a fraction of the cost of any other strap configuration/type (the average CuTS® is just 1/2 - 1/4 the price of any competing stacked metallic foil strap, and 1/4 - 1/10 the cost of any graphite/graphene/carbon-based strap). While they are most often used in ground-based applications by national laboratories, universities, and engineering/technology companies, our CuTS® are used in a number of US and European space programs including: GOES-R/S/T/U, DSAC, OSIRIS-REx, GRACE-FO, Solar Orbiter, METEOSAT and others (to learn more about CuTS® flight heritage and current space programs, visit our CuTS page).
TAI's GFTS® products are the space industry's standard for lightweight, high conductance, flexible carbon straps, and GFTS® assemblies alone have the Spaceflight Heritage required by NASA, JAXA, and ESA. Unlike graphene composite thermal links (GCL) or pyrolytic graphite sheet (PGS/PGL™) straps, GFTS® assemblies offer flexibility on all three axes, have been extensively space qualified, and are not catastrophically damaged by simple mishandling, installation, or the typical vibration and shock profiles associated with qualification and launch. The average GFTS® assembly is a mere 1/5 - 1/10 the mass of equivalent metallic thermal links/straps, and they are ideal for thermally conductive vibration isolation. Typical GFTS® programs and FM units are now comparably priced with metallic foil straps, and more affordable than any competing carbon or graphite strap commercially available.
NEW FOR 2018 - TAI just released our 2018 GFTS® Catalog, and launched our first-ever GFTS® standard product line. TAI now provides 6 standard model straps, available in multiple geometries/configurations, with customizable length and end fittings.
TAI's GFTS® assemblies have flown on the ORION and ASTRO-H programs (in addition to several others), and have been subjected to--and successfully passed--some of the most extensive and grueling spaceflight qualification ever applied to thermal straps. We are also proud to report our GFTS® assemblies are currently being used in NASA's SPICE program, GRACE-FO, GPS III, EnMAP, Boeing's CST-100 Commercial Crew Vehicle, and numerous US and European commercial and research satellites set to launch in 2017-2019.
To see examples of previous prototype & FM graphite straps, visit our GFTS® Design Gallery page. To get your copy of the 2018 GFTS® Catalog, Click Here Now!
TAI offers Pyrolytic Graphite Sheet Thermal Links / Straps (PGL™), and Graphene Composite Sheet Thermal Links (GCL™). Our PGL™ products offer the highest thermal performance in the industry, and use flexible graphite sheet with a material thermal conductance of 1,900 W/(m-K), and end fittings made of nearly any material (aluminum, titanium, copper, carbon composites, etc.). Our GCL™ products offer 1,500 W/(m-K), and are made using a multilayered graphene composite sheet (97% pure graphene), with the same end fitting options.
While (non-woven) graphite and graphene sheet straps offer high performance, it is important to note that no graphene or PGS straps have spaceflight heritage, and all configurations present significant durability & flexibility issues to consider. As a result, it is critical we have a complete understanding of your operational environment, and any load bearing, life cycle flexing/bending, and range of motion/deflection requirements.
Who (Actually) Makes Your Straps Matters...
It's important you know who actually makes your straps. At TAI, all strap products are designed, assembled, and subject to extensive quality inspections, finishing & cleaning processes, right here at our facility, by our staff. We never outsource design or assembly of ANY of our strap products to 3rd parties, machine shops, or contract laborers; largely setting us apart in the industry. Our team of technicians, engineers, and thermal link experts are here to ensure you get the highest quality strap product commercially-available, at the most affordable price in the industry.
When your program is on the line, it's important to know your strap supplier has an experienced team of engineering and assembly experts. It's also important to know their products have spaceflight heritage with the world's top aerospace organizations, and are used across the globe; from the world's largest particle accelerator facilities, to satellites, medical imaging equipment, optical systems, and commercial electronics.
Pictured: Cryocooler CuTS® assembly with cold head and dewar/rod interface fittings.
Experts You Can Count On
With TAI, you have the comfort of knowing you can get a hold of experienced personnel at any time of day. Beyond our quality and lowest prices in the industry, what sets TAI apart is our unmatched customer service, efficiency, and availability. OUR EXPERTS ALWAYS PROVIDE FRONT-END DESIGN & ASSESSMENT SERVICES TO ALL CUSTOMERS, AT NO CHARGE.
Our Director of Business Development is available via phone and email from 6 AM - 10 PM MST (13:00 - 05:00 GMT), 7 days/week, to help you understand our products and start your inquiry. Once requirements are established, our team provides all customers with complimentary design and assessment services to ensure they get the best strap solution given their needs and budget, and are always happy with their straps. Whether you need a custom or standard model strap, you can count on TAI.