Session

Technical Session X: Advanced Technologies III

SSC12-X-4_presentation.pdf (1278 kB)
Presentation Slides

Abstract

The government and private sectors are showing more interest in SmallSats for a wider range of missions. However, mission planners are discovering that even relatively simple missions are generating significant amounts of data, and that a communication infrastructure that supports high data rates must be considered early in mission conceptualization and project planning. In answer to these emerging communication needs, L-3 Communications, in conjunction with Utah State University – Space Dynamics Laboratory, developed the Cadet Radio for the Dynamic Ionosphere CubeSat Experiment (DICE) space weather program. DICE was successfully launched in October 2011, and the Cadet radios are currently down-linking mission data at 3 Mbps to the NASA Wallops Island ground station and the SRI ground station in Palo Alto, California. Cadet was designed from the ground up as a very low size, weight, and power (SWAP) software defined radio (SDR). It was also conceived as an element of a communication infrastructure which would be adaptable to various mission needs, and provide an affordable solution through a common core design. The ground communication infrastructure must also be included in SmallSat mission planning. Further community development of an integrated ground infrastructure will greatly improve the effectiveness and affordability of future SmallSat missions.

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Aug 16th, 8:45 AM

Cadet: A High Data Rate Software Defined Radio for SmallSat Applications

The government and private sectors are showing more interest in SmallSats for a wider range of missions. However, mission planners are discovering that even relatively simple missions are generating significant amounts of data, and that a communication infrastructure that supports high data rates must be considered early in mission conceptualization and project planning. In answer to these emerging communication needs, L-3 Communications, in conjunction with Utah State University – Space Dynamics Laboratory, developed the Cadet Radio for the Dynamic Ionosphere CubeSat Experiment (DICE) space weather program. DICE was successfully launched in October 2011, and the Cadet radios are currently down-linking mission data at 3 Mbps to the NASA Wallops Island ground station and the SRI ground station in Palo Alto, California. Cadet was designed from the ground up as a very low size, weight, and power (SWAP) software defined radio (SDR). It was also conceived as an element of a communication infrastructure which would be adaptable to various mission needs, and provide an affordable solution through a common core design. The ground communication infrastructure must also be included in SmallSat mission planning. Further community development of an integrated ground infrastructure will greatly improve the effectiveness and affordability of future SmallSat missions.