An integrated system tool will allow a technician to easily and quickly repair damaged high-performance electrical wire insulation in the field. Low-melt polyimides have been developed that can be processed into thin films that work well in the repair of damaged polyimide or fluoropolymer insulated electrical wiring. Such thin films can be used in wire insulation repairs by affixing a film of this lowmelt polyimide to the damaged wire, and heating the film to effect melting, flow, and cure of the film. The resulting repair is robust, lightweight, and small in volume. The heating of this repair film is accomplished with the use of a common electrical soldering tool that has been modified with a special head or tip that can accommodate the size of wire being repaired.
This repair method can furthermore be simplified for the repair technician by providing replaceable or disposable soldering tool heads that have repair film already “loaded” and ready for use. The soldering tool heating device can also be equipped with a battery power supply that will allow its use in areas where plugin current is not available.
This work was done by Martha Williams of Kennedy Space Center and Scott Jolley, Tracy Gibson, and Steven Parks of ASRC Aerospace Corporation. For more information, contact the Kennedy Space Center Innovative Partnerships Office at 321-867-5033. KSC-13193