Airbus Crisa designed and manufactured the electronic equipment to control the biggest superconducting magnet ever built for its operation in space. It was part of the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer experiment, conceived by the Nobel Prize in physics Samuel Ting to detect dark matter and anti-matter, with the purpose of contributing to the understanding of the processes that took place when the Universe was formed.
The electronic unit developed by Airbus Crisa was able to feed the superconducting magnet with up to 450 A, and had the capability to protect the electromagnet in case that any of its sections loses its superconductivity, by immediately heating its whole structure (with a diameter of 1 m) to evenly dissipate the energy stored in its entire volume.
Airbus Crisa delivered in time the flight model of the control unit, but it never went to space: the design of the superconducting magnet never reached the degree of maturity required to enable its connection on board ISS. The experiment went ahead, but the superconducting magnet was replaced by a permanent magnet to focalize the particles in the instrument’s focal plane.