What benefits does the RF Payload Systems Laboratories deliver?
The RF Payload Systems Laboratories supports the work of ESA's RF Payloads System Division across a suite of different applications. The research performed there helps assure the ongoing performance of EGNOS and provides practical support and troubleshooting in the roll-out of Galileo, set to deliver a range of location-based services to European citizens.
Their research has helped enable the new generation of SAR and radar altimeter instruments set to fly on the Sentinel series of Earth-observing satellites. ESA's SMOS satellite is an example of an innovative radiometer contributed to by RF Remote Sensing Laboratory activities, as is the PARIS concept. It has also contributed to a range of instruments, including Rosetta's radio-based sensors and the highly-specialised radiometers on the Planck observatory mapping the Cosmic Background Radiation.
The work of the Radio Navigation Laboratory is investigating how satellite navigation can be used for formation flying, which has many promising applications, including precision interferometry for astronomy and Earth observation. This research will culminate in ESA's Proba-3 mission, a two-satellite mission to prove the formation flying concept.
The RF Laboratory and ESA Telecom Laboratory are both serving the competitiveness of the European telecommunication industry, the single most lucrative space sector.
While RF Laboratory research is contributing towards improved telecom satellite platforms, the ESA Telecom Laboratory is assessing new 'downstream' satcom services, including in the field of civil protection and developing associated satcom equipment and technical standards, notably filing a data modulation patent incorporated into satcom broadband standard DVBS-2 which is nowadays used for commercial applications such as High Definition television by satellite and broadband satellite access networks.
Last update: 13 August 2013