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Telecommunication Systems for Small Satellites Operating at High Frequencies: A Review

Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91109, USA
Information 2020, 11(5), 258;
Received: 21 February 2020 / Revised: 28 April 2020 / Accepted: 30 April 2020 / Published: 8 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Satellite Communication at Ka and Q/V Frequency Bands)
Small Satellites and in particular CubeSats are becoming extremely popular platforms with which to perform space research. They allow for rapid prototyping with considerable cost savings with respect to traditional missions. However, as small satellite missions become more ambitious in terms of destinations to reach (from Low Earth Orbit to interplanetary) and in terms of the amount of data to transmit, new technologies need to be developed to provide adequate telecommunication support. This paper aims to review the telecommunication systems that have been developed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory for some of the most recent CubeSat missions operating at different frequency bands: ASTERIA (S-Band), MarCO (X-Band and UHF) and ISARA (Ka-Band and UHF). For each of these missions: the telecommunication challenges and requirements are listed; the final system design is presented; the characteristics of the different hardware components are shown; and the lessons learned through operations are discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: CubeSat; telecommunication; antenna; transceiver; operations CubeSat; telecommunication; antenna; transceiver; operations
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Babuscia, A. Telecommunication Systems for Small Satellites Operating at High Frequencies: A Review. Information 2020, 11, 258.

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