Satellite transmits take a look at indicators in Q and W band for the primary time


The W-Cube nanosatellite transmits take a look at indicators at an altitude of 500 kilometers within the Q and W band (37.5 and 75 GHz) to be able to discover new frequencies for future knowledge transmissions. Credit: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

In June, the W-Cube nanosatellite started its journey aboard a Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral to polar orbit. About a month later, it was positioned in its orbit at an altitude of 500 kilometers and has now been efficiently transmitting take a look at indicators to Earth within the Q and W band since August. It collects vital knowledge for the event of recent frequency ranges for future satellite communication techniques. The growth of the W-Cube occurred in the middle of the joint venture “ARTES”. Fraunhofer IAF developed the transmitter module of the satellite and the receiver module of the corresponding floor station.

Capacity necessities for knowledge transmissions are more and more on the rise. New knowledge highways for digital consumption are being researched worldwide, as a result of the frequent frequencies are already briefly provide at the moment. In order to attach new, highly effective satellites to the Internet sooner or later, the project ARTES, quick for Advanced Technology CubeSat-based W-band channel measurements, is testing unused frequencies within the Q and W band (37.5 and 75 GHz). The venture is the world’s first low Earth orbit (LEO) mission on this frequency vary.

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Before the satellite might begin its journey, the {hardware} needed to be developed and constructed within the first half of the venture. Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Solid State Physics IAF developed the transmitter modules and intensely low-noise receiver modules, that are core parts. The launch of the nanosatellite now marks the start of a two-year measurement marketing campaign through which take a look at indicators are routinely obtained and processed on the bottom.

Test indicators from low Earth orbit

To be capable to use new frequency bands for satellite communications sooner or later, measurement campaigns are wanted that characterize the precise atmospheric channel propagations. “Not every frequency range is suitable for all transmissions. That’s why it’s important that we take a close look at the effects of weather on frequencies,” explains venture coordinator Dipl.-Ing. Michael Schmidt from Joanneum Research.

Satellite transmits test signals in Q and W band for the first time
Final preparations on the W-Cube nanosatellite shortly earlier than it was launched into polar orbit aboard a Falcon 9 rocket. Credit: Reactor Space

On its take a look at mission, the W-Cube nanosatellite orbits the Earth in low Earth orbit (LEO). Although this differs from future operational satellites that can use the W band in a geostationary orbit (GEO), the proximity to Earth permits decisive time benefits in measurements, and the affect of climate circumstances hardly adjustments. Based on the measurement knowledge, a statistical mannequin that can allow the planning and dimensioning of future satellite hyperlinks on this frequency vary will probably be developed.

High-frequency electronics allow clear indicators from orbit

Precise and informative measurements of channel propagation between orbit and earth require extremely delicate and intensely low-noise electronics. Based on its intensive experience on this analysis space, Fraunhofer IAF has developed RF front-ends for each the satellite itself and the bottom station as a part of the venture. The RF parts encompass frequency multipliers in addition to driver and energy amplifiers for the Q and W band.

“One of the biggest challenges in terms of RF hardware, besides the sensitivity of the receiver, was to develop a transmitter module with sufficient output power up to W band to ensure an optimal signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) even under less than ideal atmospheric conditions,” says Dr.-Ing. Markus Rösch, venture supervisor on the a part of Fraunhofer IAF. Rösch’s workforce succeeded in designing transmitter modules with the mandatory energy by utilizing the institute’s personal know-how. These parts had been inbuilt split-block housings, as had been the frequency multipliers.

Reprogrammable satellite fuelled prior to launch

Satellite transmits take a look at indicators in Q and W band for the primary time (2021, September 6)
retrieved 6 September 2021

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