JPS created the Astroquartz® line of fabrics in 1964 in support of the NASA Gemini and Apollo missions. Since its creation, Astroquartz® has established itself as the recognized leader in pure (99.9% +) silica grade fabrics. The electrical, thermal, and strength properties of Astroquartz® are unparalleled.
Today Astroquartz® can be found in many groundbreaking applications including to assist commercial aviation connectivity and military aircraft communications, heat shields for orbital and martian space explorers, and as thermal protection for sensors and other temperature-sensitive parts. All of our Astroquartz® fabrics are certifiable to AMS 3846.
JPS is the world leader for quartz fabric production for composite applications. Our Astroquartz® fabrics established the use of high purity silica in fabric form, a role we are very proud of and a legacy we are excited to continue.
Physical and Mechanical
With a filament tensile strength of 870,000 PSI, (6.0GPa) Astroquartz® pure silica has a higher strength-to-weight ratio than virtually all other high-temperature materials.
Astroquartz® fabrics and fibers are flexible and function well in applications subject to torsion and flexing. Astroquartz® is transparent to ultraviolet radiation above wavelengths of 2000A, and able to maintain this property at temperatures exceeding 750°C.
Astroquartz® (99.99% pure fused silica) is chemically stable, water-insoluble, and non-hygroscopic.
Halogens and most common acids have no effect on Astroquartz® products, with the exception of hydrofluoric and hot phosphoric acids. Astroquartz® products should not be used in environments where strong concentrations of alkalis are present.
Astroquartz® can be used at temperatures much higher than either E-glass or S-glass fiber ®, up to 1050°C.
Above 1050°C, slow devitrification or crystallization occurs with and accompanying loss of flexible mechanical properties. Exposure to alkalis may promote devitrification at somewhat lower temperatures.
Astroquartz® softens at approximately 1300°C but never liquefies. Volatilization begins near 2000°C. Because of their very high melt viscosity Astroquartz® products are often used in ablative composites.
Astroquartz® has a coefficient of thermal expansion close to zero in all directions (axial and radial), 0.54 x 10-6 cm/cm/°C. It is, therefore, an ideal reinforcement where dimensional stability under thermal cycling is critical. This low coefficient factor also provides great resistance to thermal shock, resulting in a product suitable for applications involving abrupt thermal variations.
The dielectric constant (3.7) and the loss tangent factor (0.0002) are the best to date among all mineral fibers, and these outstanding performance characteristics are maintained at high frequencies and high temperatures. For these reasons, this fiber is often considered the best choice for radomes and high-speed printed circuit boards.
Additional data and support for Astroquartz® is available upon request. Contact us today, we are happy to help.