Boeing

ISS, 787,777

BOEING RADIATION EFFECTS LABORATORY

The ultimate proving ground for more than 50 years.

BREL

From outer space to the front lines, the Boeing Radiation Effects Laboratory (BREL) prepares your product for the harshest environments imaginable.

Run by our team of world-class scientists, the laboratory leads the industry in simulating the effects of destructive radiation on critical materials and electronics. BREL then uses these simulations to test, evaluate, and qualify products for use in situations where failure is not an option.

With many facilities available within Boeing and through other agencies, the laboratory is capable of simulating almost any radiated environment. From natural space radiation exposure to nuclear weapon-system threats, you can be confident that wherever your product is going, it will be prepared.

Specific testing abilities range from determining the effects of atmospheric neutrons on commercial avionics systems to assessing total ionizing dose and single-event effects of cosmic rays and natural space radiation on electronics. The laboratory also offers other services such as instrumentation and test equipment for measuring the electrical parameters of circuits before and after radiation exposure.

Since 1963, BREL has helped companies protect their people and products around the world and into space. Contact us for information about contracting opportunities, capabilities, and pricing.

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    World-class radiation effects capabilities. All in one place.

    Services

    The Boeing Radiation Effects Laboratory is the largest private radiation test lab in aerospace, leading the industry in radiation simulation, testing, and qualification of materials and electronics.

    In addition to state-of-the-art equipment, BREL has a team of world-class physicists, engineers, and technicians with decades of experience and knowledge in radiation effects environments. And by having comprehensive access to some of the world’s best irradiators, accelerators, and other test capabilities in a single location, the laboratory is able to conduct cutting-edge simulations of both natural and man-made radiation environments at a competitive cost.

    Since 1963, the team has been helping Boeing and its partners fly higher by providing the following services at competitive pricing:

    • Radiation-effects testing of electronics and materials
      • Total dose, dose rate, displacement damage, single-event effects
    • Radiation modeling
    • Combined radiation-effects testing
    • Space simulation
      • Solar, Van Allen, cosmic rays, UV
    • Man-made effects simulation
    • Flight altitude
    • Program hardness assurance
    • Survivability and vulnerability analysis

    Testing capabilities

    BREL has a wide range of in-house testing capabilities, as well as strong working relationships with external laboratories around the country. By having multiple testing facilities housed in a single location, our team is able to provide a comprehensive testing resource at competitive prices. And our network of partners increases our capabilities, giving you access to some of the best labs in the world, all in one spot.

    In-house testing capabilities

    Total ionizing dose Gamma irradiators
    Dynamitron accelerator
    Neutron single event effects 14 MeV neutron generator
    Low energy combined effects Custom test chamber
    (e-, p+, UV, and solar)
    Nuclear doserate effects 10 MeV LINAC
    7.5 MeV flash x-ray

    External testing capabilities

    Heavy ion single event effects Lawrence Berkeley Lab
    Texas A&M
    Proton single event effects
    or displacement damage
    UC Davis
    proton cancer therapy centers
    Neutron single event effects Los Alamos WNR
    TRIUMF
    Neutron displacement damage White Sands Missile Range

    Radiation effects and analysis

    Our team of experts partners with clients around the world to overcome radiation-related challenges. In addition to testing radiation effects in our laboratory, the team offers valuable modeling services to analyze the results and develop strategic solutions. From defining environments and ensuring proper radiation simulations to establishing optimal effects measurements and suggesting new designs, BREL is the world’s premier source for comprehensive testing and evaluation.

    Modeling and analysis

    • Digital microcircuit SEE analysis/rate
    • Space radiation environment modeling
    • Survivability/vulnerability analysis
    • Radiation transport
      • MCNPX transport modeling
      • Cosmic ray transport
      • Graded-Z shield design
      • High H, doped shields

    Radiation effects on devices and materials

    • Total dose ELDRS
    • Degradation of solar cells
    • Darkening of optical coatings
    • Breakdown of polymeric materials
    • Darkening of thermal control coatings
    • Synergistic effects of combined radiation
    • Spacecraft ESD simulation and effect

    Electronics test laboratory

    Our state-of-the-art electronics test laboratory is located in the same building as our radiation facilities, enabling quick and efficient analysis at less time and cost. The lab is equipped with automated testers for analog, digital, and mixed-signal integrated circuits, as well as Boeing's General Purpose Test Equipment pool, which includes an inventory of data acquisition and measurement equipment across the company with the latest bandwidth and sophistication technology.

    Our lab meets all traceability requirements of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, as well as being ISO 9001 certified.

    Material surface damage testing

    At the heart of BREL are Boeing’s combined radiation-effects test capabilities.

    Our comprehensive set of UV, vacuum UV, proton, and electron sources spans a large energy spectrum capable of testing for material surface damage effects that can impact design. Our lab is equipped with multiple chambers and, because each has a different and unique purpose, we can offer combined effects testing all in one location, testing articles measuring up to 18 inches diagonally. Further test capabilities include reflectance spectroscopy, electrostatic discharge, and in situ electron-proton beam spectrum measurements.

    Shielding-produced secondary radiation effects

    Over the past several decades, the BREL team has built a strong partnership with the Neutron and Nuclear Science (WNR) facility at Los Alamos National Laboratory. In addition to our many other partners in the industry, Los Alamos expands our capabilities by using their MCNPX radiation transport code to enable shielding design and analysis.

    This capability allows us to test secondary radiation generation within shielding material, including neutrons resulting from high-energy cosmic rays, electrons, and protons. In addition to MCNPX testing, the BREL team is also using this ability to develop lightweight shielding design tools for customers around the world.

    Investments

    Since its creation, BREL has led the industry in radiation testing and evaluation. And over the past several decades, Boeing has continued to invest resources into the laboratory to ensure that our equipment and our people remain ready at the cutting edge of aerospace.

    This ongoing evolution has allowed the BREL team to expand its abilities, and its place at the forefront of the industry, with millions of dollars’ worth of investments. These upgrades include new optical spectroscopy capabilities, beam characterization and dosimetry, test chamber enhancements, and automated testers for analog, digital, and mixed-signal integrated circuits.

    BREL has also been improved with multichannel, high-bandwidth portable controllers for data acquisition to further enable single event effects testing, as well as accelerator upgrades and new control and safety systems. Our most recent addition added a subterranean open-air enhanced low dose rate sensitivity irradiation facility in 2015.

    Program support

    The BREL team provides critical testing capabilities to dozens of Boeing’s key civilian, proprietary, and classified military programs, as well as partnering with external customers around the globe.

    From outer space to the front lines, the following are just some of BREL’s key programs:

    Space

    • NASA’s Materials International Space Station Experiments (MISSE) 1 through 7
    • Global Positioning Satellite
    • International Space Station
    • Inertial Upper Stage
    • Family of Advanced Beyond Line-of-Sight Terminals (FAB-T)

    Defense

    • Short-Range Attack Missile (SRAM II)
    • Air-Launched Cruise Missile
    • Minuteman and Peacekeeper missile systems

    Aircraft

    • Rockwell B-1B Lancer
    • Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit
    • Boeing B-52 Stratofortress
    • Boeing E-4 Advanced Airborne Command Post
    • Boeing 787 Dreamliner
    • Boeing 777X

    Irradiator specifications

    BREL Irradiator Overview

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    Tell us about your challenge and requirements.

    Contacts

    Rick McGann, Manager
    (253) 657-9813
    rick.l.mcgann@boeing.com

    Jerry Wert, Laboratory Technical Lead & ATF (Electronics)
    (206) 544-0331
    jerry.wert@boeing.com

    Brandon Wall, Accelerator Technical Lead (Materials)
    (206) 544-0344
    brandon.wall2@boeing.com

    Email address
    brel@boeing.com

    Mailing address
    The Boeing Company
    MC: 2T-50
    P.O. Box 3707
    Seattle, WA 98124
    Fax: (206) 544-0409

    FEDEX/UPS Express shipments
    Applied Physics Laboratories
    Bldg. 15-10
    1420 South Trenton Street
    Seattle, WA 98108

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