Technology to Stop the Shocks:

A low mass, low-complexity technology called the Elastic Memory Composite Hinge may be able to stop the shock spacecraft components experience when heavy springs deploy such components as solar arrays and antennae. The EMCH, which contains carbon fiber strands and an epoxy resin, gets pliable as it heats up but is stiff when cool. Composite Technology Development, Inc., working with Air Force Research Lab’s Space Vehicles Directorate, designed, advanced, and tested the EMCH project, which is now being evaluated aboard the International Space Station, where it will remain for 18 months.