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Proceedings Paper

Lower bound on number and sizes of telescopes in an optical array receiver for deep space optical communication
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Paper Abstract

Free-Space optical communication is expected to revolutionize the deep-space communication by providing the high bandwidth data support for future solar and planetary exploration missions. Due to the cost and up-gradation constraints, an earth-based receiver seems to be a viable option. A large telescope acting as an optical antenna is required at the receiver end to support the reasonable data rates (at least in 10s of Mbps range). An array of smaller telescopes connected to fabricate a larger photon-collecting aperture is an attractive architecture. In this research, performance analyses of different array architectures are evaluated for a deep-space interplanetary optical communication link between Mars and Earth with an objective to find a lower bound on the number and sizes of individual telescopes in the array receiver. The achievable data rates are calculated for opposition and conjunction phases of Mars-Earth orbit. Various deleterious factors, such as background noise and atmospheric turbulence are also modeled in the simulations. Total aperture size of various array architectures are kept at 10 m. The comparison of results for different array architectures show that the performance of a receiver employing an array comprising of 135 telescopes with 0.86 m aperture diameter each is almost equivalent to a single telescope with 10 m aperture diameter. Further, if the diameter is reduced below this limit, the performance degradation is substantial.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 October 2014
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 9248, Unmanned/Unattended Sensors and Sensor Networks X, 92480W (17 October 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2067004
Show Author Affiliations
Ali J. Hashmi, National Univ. of Science and Technology (Pakistan)
Ali A. Eftekhar, Georgia Institute of Technology (United States)
Ali Adibi, Georgia Institute of Technology (United States)
Farid Amoozegar, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9248:
Unmanned/Unattended Sensors and Sensor Networks X
Edward M. Carapezza; Panos G. Datskos; Christos Tsamis, Editor(s)

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