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Ku-Band Satellite Receiver

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - KuRx (Ku-Band Satellite Receiver)

Reporting period: 2017-06-01 to 2017-11-30

Today, the majority of satellite communication occurs at L, S and C-band, however, bandwidths at these regulated frequencies have become congested and spacecraft operators are having to move to Ku-band to deliver the next generation of satellite services.

Today, the space industry is handicapped by the inflexibility, complexity, power consumption and cost of traditional, analogue RF down-conversion, with each stage costing €160k. For key European suppliers of geo-synchronous telecommunication satellites containing up to fifty inputs, conventional receiver designs are adding over €8M to the cost of telecommunication payloads.

The current approach to satellite design requires receiver technology to be changed for almost every new mission adding unnecessary non-recurring re-design and re-qualification cost and effort to key European programs. These disadvantages severely handicap European space companies when competing for global satellite tenders. The project addresses this business opportunity by offering a receiver which can be re-used for any mission up to Ku-band without change or incurring any unnecessary non-recurring cost and effort. This represents a profound and ground-breaking advance for the space industry!

Spacecraft operators are constantly complaining that the cost to develop satellites is prohibitively expensive, delivery takes too long and never right-first-time. The project addresses this market need as the receiver can be re-used for different missions with unique RF frequency plans, enabling OEMs to bring to market new satellites quickly, competitively and right-first-time, solving major technical, commercial and programmatic problems currently being experienced by the space industry.
The Final Results has produced a new prototype demonstrating the original proof of concept.

The Impact will be a reduction in the weight of future satellite transponders by 50%, their power dissipation by 50%, their size by 60% and cost by 40%.
project concept