The commercial satellite market is following the needs of the very rapidly changing technical world of communication. However, the overall design and the manufacturing time of a satellite still requires a few years, and after launch the satellite is intended to operate up to a life time of 15 years. Within such a long span of time, techniques evolve, needs and applications change, and new data processing methods will be introduced. For this reason, the “reconfigurable payload” is a big opportunity to extent the mission profile by highly improving the flexibility of the individual satellite. To cover these future requirements TESAT has developed the Flexible Programmable MPM (FPM). Beside the classical functions, like FGM, ALC, and OPA, the FPM provides the In-Orbit-Adjustability (IOA) function and digital tuning.
The first FPM is now employed in flight programs. However, these units are not yet designed to supply higher power class TWTs, e.g. 300W Ku-Band TWTs, which are seen as a need for future satellite applications.
The objective of this activity is to design, test and conduct a qualification campaign for a 300W FPM using a EQM for the EPC/LCAMP assembly together with a representative BB of a 300W TWT. The qualification of the TWT is ongoing outside of this project.
LCAMP requirements derived from typical data from running and recently finished MPM programs.
• Frequency range and bandwidth
• Power level ranges at input and output LCAMP
• Dynamic ranges for the provided functions
• LCAMP size to fit to the relevant EPC housings
The LCAMP covers an input power level range of 40 dB in FGM and ALC mode. All dynamic ranges, the corresponding number of gain steps, and the resulting gain step size are subject to customer specific tuning of the unit.
Mechanical and electrical interfaces are defined to fit to the in house standard for the Dual-MPM.
The development and qualification of an EPC/LCAMP assembly for 300W Ku-Band Single FPM in the frame of this contract brings the relatively new FPM product line of Tesat one step further in the endless road of product improvement and presents a major milestone for the commercialisation of this product line. With this flexible high power amplifier Tesat is able to fulfil the current and future requirements in several satellite projects.
The Flexible Programmable Microwave Power Module (FPM) consists of the travelling wave tube (TWT), the electronic power conditioner (EPC) and the linearized channel amplifier (LCAMP).
Key Features of the Single FPM developed within this project are:
- Frequency: 10.7 – 12.75GHz (Ku), Bandwidth: 500 MHz
- Saturated Power Output: 300W
- Classical functions tos et RF output power to different values and to compensate ageing effects of the TWT (FGM, ALC, OPA)
- Digital In-Orbit-Adjustability to set the saturated output power to different values by controlling the cathode current for a higher efficiency (IOA)
- Serial electric CAN-Bus interface
- Efficiency (EPC): ca. 95%
The project “300W Ku-Band Single FPM” is linked to the separate “High Power 300W TWT” project and consists of a BB and EQM phase.
The BB phase includes the following steps:
- FPM concept
- technical specification of FPM, EPC, LCAMP, TWT
- electrical design, layout and housing of EPC electrical and environmental analysis
- manufacturing, integration, and test of BB FPM
The EQM phase includes the following steps:
- update concept and technical specifications
- update electrical design, layout and housing of EPC
- update analysis
- manufacturing, integration, and test of FPM with EQM EPC/LCAMP assembly and representative TWT
Product Development and Qualification has been completed successfully.