Recent advances in optical technologies have heralded a new era in space communications. Optical communications offer a higher rate of data transmission, lower power consumption and reduced device size and weight in comparison to radio based devices. In addition, optical transmission offers freedom from the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) bandwidth regulations. All these characteristics make optical communications an attractive option for both the commercial and government sectors.
SOTA is a state of the art satellite optical communications module developed by the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) in Tokyo, Japan.
- Weight: 6kg
- Capacity: 10Mbps downlink capacity using the short infrared region (1.5 micrometers).
SOTA has been tested on-board the Japanese micro satellite SOCRATES at an altitude of 650km. The SOCRATES satellite ceased operation in November 2016 after exceeding more than double its expected design life time.
180 experiments were undertaken between the satellite and optical ground stations (OGS). Our international partner - German Aerospace Center (DLR) located in Oberpfaffenhofen, Wessling, Munich also successfully linked to SOTA giving us valuable data, especially regarding optical turbulence.
The DLR has its own small satellite (OSIRIS series) with an optical terminal on board- this project and satellite model will be also presented at the NICT booth.
New trends in optical communication in low and high altitude orbit will also be discussed at the booth. For those with any new business interests in utilizing optical space communications- please visit us!
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