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KuRx Report Summary

Project ID: 775151

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

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

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

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.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

The Work Performed updated the design of the existing prototype using a new FPGA.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

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%.

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