Partnerships and Executive Moves

General Atomics to Support SDA’s Satellite Communication Experiments

General Atomics to Support SDA’s Satellite Communication Experiments

General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems has been awarded a contract by the Department of Defense to conduct a series of communication experiments for an optical inter-satellite link.

In support of the Space Development Agency, GA-EMS will deploy its 1550 nm wavelength laser communication terminals to test capabilities to increase the speed, distance and variability of communications in space, the company said

"These experiments will demonstrate robust communication capabilities through multiple mediums, from Earth, to and between satellites in multiple orbits, and on into deep space," GA-EMS President Scott Forney said.

Scott added that the company's technology will modernize satellite crosslink data transfer rates and downlink data rates for better communication transmission with greater fidelity. 

The OISL demonstration, which is scheduled in March 2021, will consist of two 12U CubeSat spacecraft, each of which will host an infrared payload and LCT payload. 

Satellite development integration and testing will be done at the company's sites in San Diego, California and Huntsville, Alabama. GA-EMS will also use its mission control capabilities from its centers in Centennial, Colorado, and Huntsville. 

Nick Bucci, GA-EMS' vice president of missile defense and space systems, said he expects the demonstration to achieve data rates of up to 5 GB/s at ranges up to about 1.5K miles. 

"This increased speed in communications is necessary to advance a variety of space applications in intelligence, surveillance, telecommunications, reconnaissance and more,” Bucci said. 

GA-EMS is a General Atomics group that specializes in researching, designing and manufacturing electromagnetic and electric power generation systems. 

Its portfolio of products and integrated system solutions supports aviation, space systems, satellites, missile defense, energy and monitoring applications. 

Category: Partnerships and Executive Moves

Tags: communication Department of Defense GA-EMS General Atomics General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems Infrared payload laser communication terminals LCTs mission control Nick Bucci OISL Optical Intersatellite Link partnership Partnerships and Executive Moves Scott Forney SDA Space Development Agency