9 December 2002 Modulating retro-reflectors for space, tracking, acquisition, and ranging using multiple quantum-well technology
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This paper describes a novel concept for optical interrogation, communication, and navigation between spacecraft platforms. The technique uses a gimbaled laser source on a pursuer spacecraft and an array of solid-state, multiple quantum well modulating retroreflectors on a target spacecraft. The sensor system provides high-bandwidth optical communication, centimeter-level relative positioning, and better than arc-minute-level relative attitude of the target platform with minimal sacrifice in target size, weight, and power. To accomplish the relative navigation, each target retroreflector return is modulated with a unique code sequence, allowing for individual discrimination of the detected composite signal at the pursuer location. Experimental results using a dual-platform, multi-degree-of-freedom testbed provide verification and demonstration of the concept, highlighting its potential for applications such as inter-spacecraft rendezvous and capture, long-baseline space interferometry, and formation flying.
© (2002) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
G. Charmaine Gilbreath, G. Charmaine Gilbreath, N. Glenn Creamer, N. Glenn Creamer, William S. Rabinovich, William S. Rabinovich, Timothy J. Meehan, Timothy J. Meehan, Michael J. Vilcheck, Michael J. Vilcheck, John A. Vasquez, John A. Vasquez, Rita Mahon, Rita Mahon, Eun Oh, Eun Oh, Peter G. Goetz, Peter G. Goetz, Sharon Mozersky, Sharon Mozersky, } "Modulating retro-reflectors for space, tracking, acquisition, and ranging using multiple quantum-well technology", Proc. SPIE 4821, Free-Space Laser Communication and Laser Imaging II, (9 December 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.465903; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.465903

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