DAS has developed optical links for ground segment beyond 40GHz, with high performance, while the qualified optical links for space segment applications go up to few GHz.
This fiber-optic solution is based on opto-electronic conversion modules that are the core devices for the Active Optical Cables (AOC). AOCs allow to substitute current electrical harness for an optical fibre one in order to reduce the harness mass in the S/C without impacting on the terminal connectors of the equipments. This enables introducing optical fibres in S/C without impacting either on the equipment manufacturing or on the S/C Assembly Integration and Testing process.
Next-Generation Satellite telecommunication payloads will require extended functionalities and more flexibility, which will result in increasing the complexity and the capability requiring a large number of frequency converters. The implementation of the satellite digital/RF payload is traditionally carried out by using several frequency down-conversion stages, thus requiring LOs, mixers, amplifiers, filters, from the native frequency (e.g. Ka band) to the down-converted frequency.
The evolution of broadband communication satellites shows a clear trend towards antenna beam-forming and antenna beam-switching systems with efficient multiple access schemes at wide bandwidths, which to be economically viable communication price should be as low as possible.