European Space Agency

Projects

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  • Generic Flexible Payload Solution

    Status date: Jun

    Enhancing capacity and flexibility is one of the major challenges for new-generation of payloads. The interest of two major European Telecommunication Operators for these solutions has motivated the present study in order to define the possible Generic Payload Solutions in line with the Operator views and with the objective of taking benefit of their guidelines for the down-selection of preferred payload scenarios.

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  • New LCAMP Technologies

    Status date: Jun

    In order to reduce equipment cost a Breadboard LCAMP based on new and innovative technologies and equipment tuning is to be developed. Herby development activities are focused on three main issues: 1) Mixed Signal ASIC to achieve maximum integration of electrical components 2) LTCC technology including a cost- and time-minimized assembly process 3) Fully automated equipment tuning

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  • PPU for Full Electric SATCOM: qualification phase

    Status date: Jun

    The aim of the project is to define and qualified the PPU Mk3 to drive 5kW Hall Effect Thruster.

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  • SMP Switch Module

    Status date: Jun

    Development of an EQM Switch Module as part of a SMP concept intended to support a wide variety of telecoms and science missions using the next generation of deep sub-micron digital processing technology.

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  • DVB-CIDD

    Status date: Jun

    The purpose of this activity will be to implement the required receiver technologies to detect multiple DVB-CID signals, and verify the effectiveness of current technologies in realistic interference scenario. The activity will be instrumental to enhance and improve the capability for detecting the presence of unwanted transmitter signatures.

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  • MHPKU

    Status date: May

    Due to the increasing market requirements for FSS and BSS services in Ku-band, Airbus decided to replace the over ten years successfully used Ortho Mode Transducers (OMT) by a set of new developed ones. Three new devices were designed, built and qualified for space application. These products cover all demands with respect to frequency band, polarisation, RF power and performance.

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  • NGSSN

    Status date: May

    The NGSSN Project addresses the Governmental Satellite Communications (GOVSATCOM) scenario which is characterised by a new SATCOM service-class fitting between COMSATCOM services, not offering guarantees for robustness and sufficient availability, and MILSATCOM services, which are both too expensive and too difficult to implement for conventional use in low or medium intensity crises.

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  • M2M IoT Maker Space For Satellite Communications

    Status date: May

    The European Space Agency (ESA) and Dublin City University have joined forces to establish a Satcom IoT ‘Maker Space’, which will support the development of innovative Machine-to -Machine (M2M) and Internet of Things (IoT) technologies for satellite communications.

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  • OCEAN

    Status date: May

    This project analyses and characterises cost-effectiveness of broadband solutions involving satellite systems vs. terrestrial-only architecture. Reference network architecture designs targeting end users in rural areas are based on three geo-economic regions, supported by a numerical and visualisation tool to elaborate sample test cases and a pilot measurement campaign to assess the broadband quality of the satellite solution.

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  • SECURESAT

    Status date: May

    Govsatcom services shall be provided to European Public Safety entities thanks to different means : classic commercial services, adequate procurement schemes to ensure immediate and guarantee access on either commercial assets or governmental assets, or dedicated Govsatcom assets. The aim of Securesat study is: first, to assess the Users and Mission requirements for Govsatcom communications, secondly to identify existing (or soon to be deployed) assets and adequate procurement models that can answer to these requirements,and then to identify the remaining gap and to define complementary new assets to fulfil the full set of requirements. The candidate solutions shall be evaluated through a trade-off to identify the best solutions (taking into account cost-effective parameters). Among the future assets, the development that could be part of a precursor will be identified and a first design will be realised.

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  • BiSon74-ET-RH

    Status date: May

    Sunsensor that can withstand both the heat and the cold associated with extendable solar panel mounting and exhibiting increased radiation tolerance so as to allow prolonged operation in or near the radiation belts.

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  • 2.5D PCB Technology

    Status date: May

    The 2.5D technology for Slipring Assembly project has been performed to demonstrate that a Slipring assembly based on 2.5D printed circuit board (PCB) technology can replace in future space mechanisms the currently used risky and costly concept.

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  • MAM

    Status date: May

    Following key development activities in the on-board processing converter product area have been performed: - The development of a Ka to L Downconverter - Development of converter multipliers MMICs. - Market survey for commercial off the shelf MMIC image reject mixers (IRM).

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  • HTMod2

    Status date: May

    In the frame of the contract 4000110670/14/NL/US a 100 Volt High torque Wheel Drive Electronic with analogue interface for a Reaction Wheel was qualified. In the frame of this qualification, which was performed on Reaction Wheel Assembly level, several features of the heritage wheel drive electronics were improved and qualified.

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  • M2MSAT

    Status date: May

    Satellite systems have unique advantages for M2M/IoT such as broad coverage and connecting remote areas where there is no or limited terrestrial network infrastructure. Today’s M2M/IoT protocols work well in terrestrial settings, while their applicability for space communication systems has received little attention so far. This project analyses existing M2M/IoT protocols and investigates into possible improvements for satellite systems.

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  • LPGAN

    Status date: Apr

    Magnitude Space is building a nano‐satellite platform to provide low‐cost IoT data connectivity for sensors globally. In an open development environment, sensors will be integrated with small transmission hardware to send small packets of data to a low‐cost cube-sat constellation and from there via ground stations to data servers at the customers’ premise.

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  • GPV (Gas Passivation Valve)

    Status date: Apr

    In the frame of space debris mitigation, ESA has implemented new requirements and recommendations, which state that satellite propulsion systems shall be passivated at end of life. The main objective of the project is to develop a Gas Passivation Valve (GPV) to meet applicable passivation requirements related to the existing European Geostationary Telecoms platforms.

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  • Iris Convergence

    Status date: Apr

    Two approaches were considered in the past for the long term evolution of the safety critical satcom for aviation: Purpose built system with custom air interface (ANTARES) and the incremental evolution of Inmarsat’s system and services (Iris Precursor, Iris Service Evolution). This study helps to converge the two approaches and find synergies.

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  • CABCOM

    Status date: Apr

    CAN bus has been used in automotive and industrial applications for years in complex systems that require demanding command and control performance. In space systems, the benefits of CAN bus have also been recognized: reducing the number of wires and weight along with lower power consumption and easier testability will result in major cost savings for spacecraft manufacturers. CAN bus is rapidly becoming an on-board standard command and control bus.

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  • AMPT

    Status date: Apr

    Innovative design of new ITAR free monopropellant 1N thruster developed specifically to out-perform existing flight-proven designs in terms of longevity. Radical use of materials, catalyst loading, nozzle and injector design, filtering and fine particle control, etc. will make this thruster a key player in the 1N chemical thruster market for satellite orbit control systems. Flight Standard Qualification to 44kg throughput was completed in August 2016. Delivery of first flight thruster in September 2016 ensures rapid flight heritage for the MHT-1N with launch planned for June 2017.

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  • LEREA

    Status date: Apr

    The future generation of communication satellites will use multi-beam antennas providing wide-band two-ways communication applications. Active discrete lens antennas permit generating a multibeam coverage adopting only a single Tx/Rx aperture or two separated Tx and Rx apertures instead of the current solutions based on multi-reflector systems. Reduced volume and maximum EIRP flexibility over the service area are the main advantages of this alternative multibeam antenna. The main criticalities of discrete lens antennas are associated with their mass, physical accommodation, power consumption and thermal control of the high power amplifiers. Reflector antennas exhibit some complementarity with respect to lens antennas: they guarantee a high gain but limited scanning capabilities. Combining a discrete lens with a reflector system would allow reducing the physical size of the lens itself, making it more manageable with respect to the criticalities mentioned above, and at the same time reducing the limitations of reflector antenna systems.

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  • SPECSI

    Status date: Apr

    The SPECSI project examined the role of satellites in future communication networks and applications in 2020-25. It studied emerging ICT trends to identify future opportunities for satcom and their associated system propositions. The outputs of the study are designed to help ESA understand how the European and Canadian satellite industry can be best supported through its ARTES programme.

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  • PACS

    Status date: Apr

    The project aims at developing a testbed in software defined radio (SDR) to prove the feasibility of and measure the performance achievable in practice by the most promising among a set of advanced multiple access schemes for the return link of satellite communications networks

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  • Autonomous Orbit Determination and Station Keeping Control for Competitive Telecom Missions

    Status date: Mar

    Trade-off on different autonomous orbit-determination solutions including GNSS and optical-based navigation, and a trade-off on different station keeping strategies, to define the global autonomous system best suited for chemical and for hybrid chemical/electrical Telecom platforms on geo-stationary orbit. The chosen solution is based on GNSS and on classical Station Keeping strategy.

  • Optical RF Distribution Flight Demonstrator (ORFD)

    Status date: Mar

    This project intends to demonstrate the attractiveness of optical distribution of RF/LO signals in terms of low mass, signal integrity and EMI immunity. A follow-on qualification program will further increase the TRL level of this implementation.

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  • SHINE (Secure Hybrid In Network caching Environment)

    Status date: Mar

    An end-to-end secure infrastructure for the delivery of collaborative multimedia services over integrated satellite-terrestrial networks

  • RF COAXIAL CONNECTORS, TNC, VERY HIGH POWER, 50 OHMS

    Status date: Mar

    Radiall has developed and qualified a new serie of TNC connectors under ARTES 5.1 and 3 contract. Radiall has qualified a complete range of TNC Very High Power connectors. 14 variants have been created and qualified, and three new ESCC detail specifications have been created.

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  • SB-SAT

    Status date: Mar

    The SB-SAT (Swift-Broadband for Satellites) spacecraft communications system is designed to enable continuous, near real-time communications between satellite operators and spacecraft in Low Earth Orbit (LEO). The system eliminates the need for expensive new investment in dedicated ground-based communications infrastructure and greatly increases the operational capability of LEO spacecraft.

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  • New Avionics for SATCOM

    Status date: Mar

    This newly developed generation of avionics for commercial geostationary communications satellites (SATCOM) achieves a significant reduction in cost while at the same time greater flexibility at system and operational level are reached.

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  • RAMSES

    Status date: Feb

    The RAMSES (Roadmap for Advanced Mobile SatellitE Systems) project has been defined in order to contribute to the definition of roadmaps of new solutions – new technologies, new products – for the successful deployment of Next Generation Mobile Satellite Systems in the 2025 timeframe.

  • GNSS in GTO

    Status date: Feb

    The Airbus DS GmbH LION Navigator is a multi-GNSS-constellation multi-frequency receiver for spacecraft that is space qualified for operation in low Earth orbits and in-tended for geosynchronous Earth orbits. The goal of the activity is to enlarge the application area of the LION Navigator to launch and early operation phases on transfer up to and including the nominal operation in geosynchronous orbit.

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  • NFG

    Status date: Feb

    The project comprises investigation on how novel semiconductor technologies (GaN) can be used to meet demanding, future requirements on signal sources. The effort is divided in three consecutive technology steps. This first step include system definition, semiconductor technology trade-off and broadband VCO design including detailed PLL EM unit design. One PLL EM Unit has been built to show function and performance of the VCO.

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  • Network Security on Multi-Spot Beam Broadband Networks for Multicast Based Interactive Systems

    Status date: Feb

    In this project a secure multicast framework and architecture is defined on top of a multi-spot beam interactive satellite system, including the proposed application scenarios and use cases. A demonstrator is designed and developed to verify and demonstrate the defined secure multicast solution and proposed enhancements. Finally, implementation guidelines and standard evolution recommendation for the secure multicast satellite system are produced.

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  • MTN-CCN2

    Status date: Feb

    In the main study "Characterization of the Mobile Tracking Needs // ESA AO/1-6669/10/NL/NR" a measurement database was designed, developed and published. The database provides statistics of motion dynamics for mobile satellite terminals. The database (with access to industry residing within ESA member states) supports the design and testing of Satellite Communications On-The-Move (SOTM) tracking systems. The activity included a data gathering campaign and the development and population of a database. In this Contract Change Notice (CCN) standard motion profiles are defined based on the full set of measurements (including new measurements). The motion profiles are included in the GVF-105 standard SOTM test recommendations and their usability and applicability were tested in a pilot test with a commercial SOTM terminal at the Fraunhofer IIS Facility for Over-the-air Research and Testing (FORTE).

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  • HEVC_4K

    Status date: Feb

    The project developed key technologies for UHD satellite broadcasting systems both for direct-to-home (DTH) services as well as for presenting live events in digital cinemas. It successfully developed and implemented a real-time encoder for High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) supporting High Dynamic Range video.

  • KaLQ

    Status date: Feb

    Through the Artes-34 R&D project “KaLQ” with ESA, Kongsberg Norspace has developed and successfully qualified the two frequency converter units for conversion between Ka- and L-band frequencies. The up- and down-converter units are tailored for use on in a Ka-Band Terminal for Inter Satellite Links.

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  • INSTINCT

    Status date: Jan

    This project investigates the feasibility of satellite networks integration with terrestrial clouds to dynamically and optimally offer services. It identifies suitable solutions in connection to key satellite capabilities, such as broadcasting/multicasting, large coverage areas, ability to reach remote areas, mobility support, service resilience and flexibility for extending capacity, as well as uniform QoS irrespective of distance to end user.

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  • ACCORD

    Status date: Jan

    ACCORD specifies a complete platform capable of generating innovative terminals able to automatically reconfigure seamless switching between different air interfaces. This truly innovative approach is based on: Smart router, provides seamless vertical handover selecting the most appropriate network on Quality of Service-based policies; Common Interface, manages satellite and terrestrial air interfaces and their protocols using a fully Software-Defined Radio approach.

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  • MARF

    Status date: Jan

    High power telecom platforms require the deployment of large appendages like solar arrays, antennas or radiators. In many cases their deployment needs to be speed regulated in order to better control their dynamics but also to avoid excessive latching shocks. This activity has been performed to demonstrate the potential of Magneto Rheological fluids in order to provide tuneable speed regulator solutions. An Engineering Model of a self-standing speed regulator unit, based on Magneto Rheological fluid technology, has been produced and tested.

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  • CHVPS

    Status date: Jan

    The increase of required thrust power will follows the increasing mass and power of future satellite. In the frame of future development, a big challenge consists to develop a high voltage power supply configurable to supply several kind of thrusters.

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  • 250WkaRC

    Status date: Jan

    Design, development and test of an engineering model of a wideband and highly efficient radiation-cooled 250 W Ka band space traveling-wave tube.

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  • Q/V-Feed

    Status date: Jan

    The development of a slimline Q/V-band feed system EM suitable for gateway applications in telecoms GEO VHTS systems.

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  • SKYWAN 5G

    Status date: Jan

    The new SKYWAN 5G is designed for the Next Generation of Satcom. It is THE ONE mesh VSAT network solution with multiple integrated DVB-S2 stars. All data is transmitted reliably in single-hop and time critical data is prioritized avoiding extra delays. The unique hardware design of SKYWAN 5G has already build in the highest flexibility, fits all topologies and enables growth of your network by stacking The ONE modem.

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  • TxBx2

    Status date: Jan

    Through the Artes-34 R&D project “Development of 2nd Generation Telemetry and Beacon Transmitter (“TxBx2”) with ESA, Kongsberg Norspace has developed and successfully qualified two new beacon transmitters at C-band and Ku-band. After the completion of the test campaign, the Ku-band unit was rebuilt to a frequency agile Telemetry Transmitter. This EQM is also successfully qualified.

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  • SOTM Standards

    Status date: Jan

    The activity “Standards Preparation For SOTM Terminals“ is a study to define a common way to specify and verify Satellite On The Move Terminals (SOTM). Currently SOTM terminals are not consistently specified, nor independently verified for a number of key performance criteria. Under these circumstances, it is difficult for service providers, satellite operators, and end users to clearly understand the capabilities of the product being offered without embarking on expensive and lengthy trials. For the SOTM market to continue to grow, obstacles preventing fast and fluid transactions need to be removed, and a clear understanding of product performance needs to be developed. This activity will help move the SOTM market away from the characteristics of a niche market and towards a more established, consumer and manufacturer friendly one.

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  • RSSTP

    Status date: Jan

    Telecom satellite transponder specifications relating to transmission performances which may be overly stringent, and which could be relaxed, thereby reducing satellite overall cost and schedule.

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  • EASO

    Status date: Jan

    SPELL (Satellite Procedure Execution Language and Library, https://sourceforge.net/projects/spell-sat/) is a free, open source software package developed by SES in cooperation with GMV. The purpose of SPELL is to automate the execution of satellite procedures. SPELL works on multiple satellite platforms and can be interfaced to multiple ground control systems. Thanks to this versatility, SPELL increases the productivity of satellite controllers and engineers. The EASO project aimed to develop the satellite procedures and the automatic procedure converter software necessary to extend the use of SPELL to SES’ satellites fleet.

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  • Compact and Scalable Ka band Switch Matrix

    Status date: Jan

    Feasibility of an advanced highly integrated, low mass and cost efficient High Order Scalable Solid State Switch Matrix for use in future Ka-band multibeam payloads, aiming at reaching higher on board capacities, higher number of user beams and even higher number of RF equipment units.

  • Ultra-High Throughput Transmission Through Wideband Ka Transponder

    Status date: Jan

    The central focus of this project is to develop, integrate, verify and optimise enhanced transmission techniques through testing over wideband satellite transponders, which allow reaching over 1 Gbit/s single carrier per transponder transmission data rates.

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  • European Roadmap for Digital OBP Based on Deep Sub-Micron Microelectronics

    Status date: Jan

    Next generation of flexible payloads will continue to widen towards the on-board processing (OBP) architecture as core of their design. The increasing of the satellite capabilities in term of service and applications demand is pushing the exigency to improve the current way to think and design a SATCOM payload. At European level another mandatory exigency is motivated by the technological non-dependence and competitiveness as stated and stimulated by European Space Agency (ESA) and the European Commission (EC) in the frame of H2020. This is to guarantee not only the non-dependency from products coming from out-side Europe and its affiliate Countries, but also to improve the competitiveness and final product/solutions performances. First step to improve OBP technology towards a Next Generation (NG) is to implement new space components having rad hard characteristics and improved integration scale moving towards deep sub-micron microelectronics (DSM) technology at 65 nm end beyond. The Study has given an outlook on the new space missions and related market interest that are stimulating the DSM as driver for the NG-OBP development. The description starts from an outlook on the state-of-the-art of the OBP technology, watching the main technologies up to now assessed. A view is provided on the relationships between the main actors can be involved in the space DSM and that contribute in the implementation and improvement of this technology. The Study has been concluded providing a summary on the main key functional requirements derived by the provided technology assessment, useful for the future developments and contributing in convincing the satellite market to make the jump towards a new age of the satellite technology. Another item provided in the concluding part of the Study has been the definition of a cost/benefit analysis providing a consistent technology roadmap.

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