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Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics


LASP has a highly dedicated team of professional mechanical/electrical engineers and students with substantial experience in designing, fabricating, integrating and operating:

  • planetary instruments
  • Earth observing instruments
  • solar observing instruments
  • fields and particle instruments
  • space dust instrumentation
  • advanced detectors
  • space flight computational hardware
  • optical systems and mechanisms
  • instrument calibrations and testing all facets of flight hardware.

In additional to the LASP facilities, we utilize other local aerospace facilities at CU-CASA, Ball Aerospace, and Lockheed Martin for specialized environmental testing, such as vibration, EMI/EMC, thermal vacuum, and acoustic tests.

A view of LASP

The environmental test lab at LASP. (Courtesy, LASP)

The metrology lab at LASP. (Courtesy, LASP)

The "Black" Lab used during light-sensitive testing. (Courtesy, LASP)

LASP Cleaning Lab. (Courtesy, LASP)


There are a number of specialized laboratories at LASP used in developing, assembling, building, testing, cleaning, and calibrating components and instruments built on-site. These laboratories include facilities for:

  • assembling electronics,
  • testing electronics under varying pressure and thermal conditions,
  • mixing and applying bonding materials, coatings, encapsulants, and polymeric materials,
  • cleaning components via ultrasound and de-ionized water,
  • metrology testing,
  • light-sensitive testing, and
  • calibration.

To learn more, visit: Laboratory Facilities at LASP

Radiometric Calibration Laboratories

The unique capabilities of two LASP labs are highly-specific for improving the radiometric calibration accuracy of instruments measuring total solar irradiance (TSI) and spectral solar irradiance (SSI). Their capabilities include establishing ground-based irradiance reference standards, and providing a means to compare these instruments against this standard under flight-like operating conditions. These labs, the TSI Radiometer Facility, and the Spectral Radiometer Facility are the only calibration facilities in the world capable of characterizing TSI and SSI instruments to the desired absolute radiometric accuracy at power levels and vacuum conditions experienced on flight.

For more details, visit: TSI Radiometer Facility
For more details, visit: Spectral Radiometer Facility

Mobi Vacuum Chamber capable of 10-6 to 10-8 torr. (Courtesy, LASP)

One of two identical Bemco vacuum chambers at LASP. (Courtesy, LASP)

CTE2 cryogenic pump is equipped with a vacuum monochromator and associated far ultraviolet and mid ultraviolet light sources. (Courtesy, LASP)

CTE3 cryogenic pump is equipped with a vacuum extreme ultraviolet (EUV) monochromator and associated EUV light sources. (Courtesy, LASP)

One of LASP's Vacuum bake-out (BOT) chambers used for bake-out of flight instrument components. (Courtesy, LASP)

Vacuum Test Chambers

LASP has a number of vacuum systems for environmental testing and conditioning of space instruments to ensure that they will function properly in the extremes of space including, temperature, humidity, and radiation levels amongst others.  All vacuum systems are roughed by oil-free roughing pumps and cleanliness of the systems is monitored with Residual Gas Analyzers and Thermo-Electric Quartz Crystal Micro Balances.

To learn more, visit: Vacuum Test Chamber Facilities at LASP

The High Bay clean room at LASP. (Courtesy, LASP)

Clean Rooms

LASP has a 2 story, 2000 sq. ft., class 10000 clean room suitable for building spacecraft.
LASP also has three other designated clean rooms.

  • Two are 500 square foot clean rooms with an air cleanliness level of class 10000.
  • The third is a 400 square foot, class 10000 fully equipped detector development lab.

All clean rooms are equipped with certified class 100 laminar flow assembly benches, are ESD compatible, and humidity and temperature controlled.  One of the clean rooms is equipped with two vacuum thin film deposition chambers.

To learn more, visit: Clean Room Facilities at LASP

Made-to-print instrument components are manufactured at the LASP Machine Shop. (Courtesy, LASP)

Machine Shop

The LASP Instrument shop draws on more than 214 years of combined machining experience working on a variety of materials including metals, ceramics, and plastics and off designs based on prints, sketches, and computer aided designs (CAD).

To learn more, visit: Machine Shop Facility at LASP