Measurements on an autonomous wireless payload at 635 km distance using a sensitive radio telescope

Marinus Jan Bentum, Johan Leijtens, Chris Verhoeven, Hans van der Marel

Abstract

The Delfi-C3 spacecraft carries the first autonomous wireless payload in space. This payload is a wireless sun sensor developed by TNO in the Netherlands. The data captured by the sensor is wirelessly transported to the central computer system inside the spacecraft. Since no additional power supply is needed, this sensor is fully autonomous. The radio link is a FSK link at 915 MHz using a standard Nordic Chipset. At the Delfi C3 spacecraft two of these autonomous sun sensors are mounted. Unfortunately only one is operational. Using the Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope we tried to detect the 915 MHz signal from the sun sensor to the internal receiver. Before the measurements could be done, the effects of the shielding of the spacecraft case were measured using a spare spacecraft. The final obtained link budget showed a 10 dB SNR when using a 25 meter single dish telescope. Measurements were performed at the WSRT by using multiple radio telescopes placed in the orbit direction. The downlink signal of Delfi C3 was detected, but the 915 MHz signal was not as it should be. We conclude that the sun sensor is malfunctioning.
Original languageUndefined
Title of host publication33rd ESA Antenna Workshop on Challenges for Space Antenna Systems
Place of PublicationNoordwijk
PublisherEuropean Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC)
Pages1-5
Number of pages5
ISBN (Print)not assigned
StatePublished - 19 Oct 2011
Event33rd ESA Antenna Workshop on Challenges for Space Antenna Systems 2011 - Noordwijk, Netherlands

Publication series

Name
PublisherEuropean Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC)

Conference

Conference33rd ESA Antenna Workshop on Challenges for Space Antenna Systems 2011
CountryNetherlands
CityNoordwijk
Period18/10/1121/10/11

Fingerprint

Sensors
Spacecraft
Sun
Radio telescopes
Frequency shift keying
Radio links
Telescopes
Shielding
Telecommunication links
Orbits
Computer systems

Keywords

  • METIS-281644
  • EWI-21005
  • IR-78985

Cite this

Bentum, M. J., Leijtens, J., Verhoeven, C., & van der Marel, H. (2011). Measurements on an autonomous wireless payload at 635 km distance using a sensitive radio telescope. In 33rd ESA Antenna Workshop on Challenges for Space Antenna Systems (pp. 1-5). Noordwijk: European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC).

Bentum, Marinus Jan; Leijtens, Johan; Verhoeven, Chris; van der Marel, Hans / Measurements on an autonomous wireless payload at 635 km distance using a sensitive radio telescope.

33rd ESA Antenna Workshop on Challenges for Space Antenna Systems. Noordwijk : European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC), 2011. p. 1-5.

Research output: Scientific - peer-reviewConference contribution

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Bentum, MJ, Leijtens, J, Verhoeven, C & van der Marel, H 2011, Measurements on an autonomous wireless payload at 635 km distance using a sensitive radio telescope. in 33rd ESA Antenna Workshop on Challenges for Space Antenna Systems. European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC), Noordwijk, pp. 1-5, 33rd ESA Antenna Workshop on Challenges for Space Antenna Systems 2011, Noordwijk, Netherlands, 18-21 October.

Measurements on an autonomous wireless payload at 635 km distance using a sensitive radio telescope. / Bentum, Marinus Jan; Leijtens, Johan; Verhoeven, Chris; van der Marel, Hans.

33rd ESA Antenna Workshop on Challenges for Space Antenna Systems. Noordwijk : European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC), 2011. p. 1-5.

Research output: Scientific - peer-reviewConference contribution

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N2 - The Delfi-C3 spacecraft carries the first autonomous wireless payload in space. This payload is a wireless sun sensor developed by TNO in the Netherlands. The data captured by the sensor is wirelessly transported to the central computer system inside the spacecraft. Since no additional power supply is needed, this sensor is fully autonomous. The radio link is a FSK link at 915 MHz using a standard Nordic Chipset. At the Delfi C3 spacecraft two of these autonomous sun sensors are mounted. Unfortunately only one is operational. Using the Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope we tried to detect the 915 MHz signal from the sun sensor to the internal receiver. Before the measurements could be done, the effects of the shielding of the spacecraft case were measured using a spare spacecraft. The final obtained link budget showed a 10 dB SNR when using a 25 meter single dish telescope. Measurements were performed at the WSRT by using multiple radio telescopes placed in the orbit direction. The downlink signal of Delfi C3 was detected, but the 915 MHz signal was not as it should be. We conclude that the sun sensor is malfunctioning.

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Bentum MJ, Leijtens J, Verhoeven C, van der Marel H. Measurements on an autonomous wireless payload at 635 km distance using a sensitive radio telescope. In 33rd ESA Antenna Workshop on Challenges for Space Antenna Systems. Noordwijk: European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC). 2011. p. 1-5.