Demonstration of data transmission from a microsatellite by laser

Nov. 2, 2023
OSIRIS4CubeSat, the world's smallest commercially available laser communications terminal, was developed specifically for use on small and microsatellites, DLR reports.

COLOGNE - Small satellites are becoming increasingly compact and powerful. The technology of conventional radio channels is reaching its limits due to the rising number of satellites. Laser communications offers solutions for the efficient transmission of high data volumes without interfering with other channels. For this application, the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) Institute of Communications and Navigation, together with the company Tesat-Spacecom GmbH & Co. KG TESAT, developed OSIRIS4CubeSat, the world's smallest commercially available laser communications terminal. The reliability and error-free functionality of the terminal, which was specifically developed for use on microsatellites, was confirmed during a test mission in space, DLR reports.  Continue reading original article.

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

2 November 2023 -  "This success is the result of our many years of research in the field of optical satellite communications," says Florian David, Director of the DLR Institute of Communications and Navigation. "It demonstrates the impressive potential for designing small, light and at the same time powerful optical satellite terminals. This is an important building block for future satellite systems, for example for Earth observation or in megaconstellations."

DLR writes that "The first OSIRIS4CubeSat terminal was launched into space on board the CubeL satellite on 24 January 2021. During the PIXL-1 mission, images acquired by the camera system on CubeL could be sent to the Optical Ground Station Oberpfaffenhofen using the OSIRIS4CubeSat laser. Both the satellite and the laser terminal have since undergone extensive testing. Now the tests have been successfully completed with an end-to-end demonstration. The reliability and error-free functionality of OSIRIS4CubeSat in space have been confirmed."

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Jamie Whitney, Senior Editor
Military + Aerospace Electronics

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