OWR-RFE - Optical Wideband Reconfigurable Receiver Front-End

Objectives

The aim of the study is to design, manufacture and test an EBB (Elegant BreadBoard) of an opto-microwave wideband reconfigurable receiver front-end (OWR-RFE) for future broadband telecom payloads.

A delta development of main critical optical components of the OWR-RFE to meet the overall system level requirements is included.

The overall objective of this activity is at 3 levels:

  1. to define the best mission / payload for implementing an optical sub-system
  2. to develop / upgrade the technology for the space use of the critical optical components
  3. to design, manufacture and test an engineering model of an optical sub-system corresponding to this mission

Challenges

Define mission/payload architecture showing a real interest (technical and economical) of optical technology versus microwave technology.

Establish new design rules for optical/microwave engineering

Develop hardware with an emerging technology in the space domain

Benefits

If the optical technology appears as a breaking technology compare to microwave technology, a new family product could be developed at EQM level in order to cope to business segment evolution needs.

Features

The OWR-RFE will provide the following key functions for telecom repeaters:

* photonic multi-LO flexible frequency conversions

* optical flexible routing and switching of signals

* intermediate amplification of the signals

System Architecture

The OWR-RFE consists of 3 main-subsystems :

  • Photonic frequency generation Assembly (P-FGA), providing multiple optical Local Oscilators (LO) to frequency converters
  • Photonic frequency conversion assembly (P-FCA), providing frequency translation from RF input frequency to wanted RF output frequency
  • Photonic Switching and Routing Assembly (P-SRA) , providing Switching and Routing, and also intermediate amplification of the signals

Plan

The study is divided in three phases: 

Phase 1A:  scenario definition,  payload level trade-offs between a classical non optical (RF/Digital) implementation and solution involving optics

Phase 1B: Preliminary design of the an Elegant  BreadBoard of an opto-microwave wideband reconfigurable receiver front-end (OWR-RFE)

Phase 2: Detailed design of the an Elegant  BreadBoard of an opto-microwave wideband reconfigurable receiver front-end (OWR-RFE)

Delta technology development of selected critical optical components.

Phase 3: Development of an Elegant  BreadBoard of an opto-microwave wideband reconfigurable receiver front-end (OWR-RFE)

Current status

The study is divided in three phases: 

Phase 1A:  scenario definition,  payload level trade-offs between a classical non optical (RF/Digital) implementation and solution involving optics

Status:  Completed 

Phase 1B: Preliminary design of the an Elegant  BreadBoard of an opto-microwave wideband reconfigurable receiver front-end (OWR-RFE)

Status:  Completed 

Phase 2: Detailed design of the an Elegant  BreadBoard of an opto-microwave wideband reconfigurable receiver front-end (OWR-RFE)

Delta technology development of selected critical optical components. Status:  Completed

Phase 3: Development of an Elegant  BreadBoard of an opto-microwave wideband reconfigurable receiver front-end (OWR-RFE)

Status:  Development and test completed; Hardware Acceptance Review completed; Final Review preparation on-going.

Contacts

ESA Contacts

Status date

Wednesday, October 3, 2018 - 11:01