Over the last couple of years, NASA has been making changes to the Laser Communications Relay Demonstration (LCRD) project, a joint effort spanning NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), the Jet Propulsion Laboratory California Institute of Technology (JPL) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Lincoln Laboratory (MIT LL). The changes make LCRD more like a future Earth relay system that has both high-speed optical and radio frequency links, enabling LCRD to demonstrate a more detailed concept of operations for a future operational, mission-critical Earth relay. LCRD is planned to launch in June 2019 and is expected to be followed a couple of years later by a prototype user terminal on the International Space Station. LCRD’s architecture will allow it to serve as a testbed in space, and this paper will provide an update of its planned capabilities and experiments.
Bernard L. Edwards, David J. Israel, and Seema K. Vithlani, "Latest changes to NASA's laser communications relay demonstration project," Proc. SPIE 10524, Free-Space Laser Communication and Atmospheric Propagation XXX, 105240P (Presented at SPIE LASE: January 30, 2018; Published: 15 February 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2285221.
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