Ku-band Toroid Antennas

Objectives

The objective of the activity was to develop and verify a new competitive member to the present set of Ku-band antennas, a dual frequency (Rx/Tx) dual port Ku-band bicone antenna.


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Challenges

  • Consolidation of requirements
  • EQM Design
  • EQM MAIT

Apart from the above main steps in this Artes-4 development the focus has been put on the following design features:

  • Within the design work topics like modularization and standardized interfaces between modules and towards the S/C have been emphasized.
  • Good produceability and efficient assembly and testing by minimizing the amount of and standardizing the different parts in the antennas as well as working with the foreseen production and assembly tasks early in the design work.
  • Solving the often contradictory RF, mechanical and power handling requirements to reach the best possible performance trade-off.

Benefits

RUAG Aerospace (RSE) has since 1995 made considerable efforts to widen its markets outside the ESA sphere. Both the European and the US commercial markets have been approached, with emphasis on certain types of Antennas and certain types of Converters for telecommunication applications.

RSE now sees a growing market for Ku-band wide coverage bicone antennas. Discussions with different primes have been ongoing the last years. And the conclusion is that we need to add and further develop the Ku-band antenna product range. We also see the need to optimize the designs for volume production.

RSE has the clear strategy to become a world leading independent supplier of wide coverage antennas to the space industry. The development of a cost efficient Ku-band bicone antenna is an important step in these strives.

This Artes-4 activity is proposed to widen our product range of Ku-band wide coverage antennas for the telecommand and telemetry Geomobile application.

The objective of the study is to ensure that the very strong position of RUAG Aerospace as a provider of this type of antennas is maintained by offering the suitable state of the art technology and to support and ensure model qualification.

Features

The antenna is a double band antenna with two circularly polarised antenna elements (TM/Tx and CMD/Rx) having toroidal coverage the radiators are stacked on top of each other.

Two ports for each antenna element are via a septum polarizer’s feeding the antenna elements to achieve redundancy.

The antenna assembly consists of two biconical type radiators, stacked on top of each other.

The antenna assembly provide separate Telemetry / Tx and Command / Rx operation, having two ports each.

The antenna Telemetry / Tx or Command / Rx part electrically consist of:

  • Biconical radiator
  • Septum polarizer

All main parts are made out of aluminium alloy. The screws are made of passivated stainless steel. Grounding of the antenna is obtained via the aluminium mounting flange/plate.

The antenna thermal design is passive and it is designed to perform over a wide temperature range.

 

Plan

The performance of this contract was divided into 3 main work packages to meet the goals for the Ku-band toroidal antennas. Each one of these blocks is split into a few sub blocks.

Requirements Engineering and conceptual design was the first step. This part was divided into the following sub blocks to meet goals for this antenna;

  • Market investigation
  • Issue of specifications
  • Preliminary design of antenna (mechanical, thermal and electrical)

The preliminary design was reviewed in the BDR (Baseline Design Review) and the next steps can commence, which is an optimized design to be used in the Breadboarding, which is the ultimate step in this development contract.

The BB design is summarized by the following blocks;

  • Mechanical and thermal design and analyses
  • Electrical design and analyses
  • Provide Test documents
  • Prepare Production File

These steps were review at the MTR (Mid Term Review).

The final steps towards the BB, EQM Manufacturing, Integration & Test, can be summarized by the following steps;

  • EQM Procurement
  • EQM Assembly
  • EQM Verification
  • Final Reporting

Current status

The project is finalized with successful EQM testing and the development has resulted in orders of flight antennas to telecommunication S/C’s.

Contacts

Status date

Wednesday, July 15, 2009 - 10:32