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Proceedings Paper

Comparison of radio frequency and optical architectures for deep-space communications via a relay satellite
Author(s): G. Stephen Mecherle; Michael Horstein
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Paper Abstract

Parametric tradeoffs were performed for candidate technologies to support an orbiting relay satellite for communication with spacecraft in deep-space in the early 21st century. Both RF and optical system architectures were examined with a methodology which equitably compared the performance and attractiveness for the deep-space communication mission. Two candidate system architectures based on optical technologies were recommended for more detailed design-a system using coherent detection with an astronomical quality 4 meter telescope, and a system using direct detection with a 10 meter photon bucket telescope. Both of these systems appear capable of providing more than an order of magnitude improvement in communication performance over the DSN after it is upgraded to Ka Band.

Paper Details

Date Published: 16 August 1994
PDF: 18 pages
Proc. SPIE 2123, Free-Space Laser Communication Technologies VI, (16 August 1994); doi: 10.1117/12.184681
Show Author Affiliations
G. Stephen Mecherle, TRW Space & Electronics Group (United States)
Michael Horstein, TRW Space & Electronics Group (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2123:
Free-Space Laser Communication Technologies VI
G. Stephen Mecherle, Editor(s)

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