Quadband mini helix TWTA

Status date

This project set out to develop a Quadband mini helix TWT. Initial applications include satellite news gathering, remote internet and disaster relief.

The TWT will cover the C, X, Ku and DBS frequency ranges and will be designed to be integrated into the existing 200W class of satellite communication uplink amplifiers, including the recently launched StellarMiniTM Amplifier.


The key issue to be tackled in this project is the development of a quadband mini helix TWT together with a harmonic injection system (HIS). Although the concept of harmonic injection has been previously demonstrated, that concept has not previously been realised in a compact format. This project aims to develop an e2v HIS breadboard “proof of concept” design into a compact unit which can be used commercially.

During the project duration it was found that a HIS was not technically required in the final system. Accordingly HIS technology was investigated and developed under this contract but not included in the final amplifier.


The introduction of a commercially attractive quadband TWTA into the ground based satcom market.


The TWT and resulting TWTA system will feature coverage of C, X, Ku and DBS frequency ranges from one compact system. The Satcom amplifier resulting from this tube development will offer users a flexible uplink capability.

Following project completion sales will be targeted at four user communities:

  • The global SNG rapid reaction newsforce.
  • Operators of remote internet base stations.
  • Aid agencies – particularly for use in disaster relief operations.
  • Worldwide peace keeping forces.

The resulting product will be marketed as part of our Stellar Mini range.

click for larger image


bA detailed GANTT chart is published on e-project. The overall project duration was 12 months. Review meetings were timetabled at key points throughout the project.

Kick off meeting March 2009
PDR Kick off + 2 months
MTR Kick off + 6 months
Final Review Kick off + 12 months

In addition, monthly progress reports were issued and published on the e-project web site.

Current status

The project kicked off at ESTEC in March 2009 and was completed by March 2010.