1 March 2006 Simplified lasercom system architecture using a disturbance-free platform
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Abstract
A simplified laser communications (lasercom) system architecture, primarily for a deep-space flight transceivers, can be realized by decoupling the lasercom optical components from the host spacecraft using a disturbance-free platform (DFP) developed by Lockheed Martin Space System Company. Unlike conventional lasercom system architectures where a high bandwidth control loop is used to stabilize the optical line-of-sight in the presence of platform disturbance, the DFP package isolates the optical train from the high frequency platform jitter produced by the host. By preventing the vibration from coupling into the optics train, the need for a high bandwidth beam stabilization control loop (including fast steering mirror, detectors, controls and the associated relay optics) is eliminated with possible mass savings. Effective isolation of the platform jitter also enables the optical focal plane array to operate at a much longer integration time, thus enabling the use of either faint stars or a weak beacon as a pointing reference. This feature can allow the same lasercom system architecture to be employed for deep space and some near Earth applications, and can potentially enable deep space return signal pointing without the need of an uplink beacon.
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Chien-Chung Chen, Hamid Hemmati, Abhijit Biswas, Gerardo Ortiz, William Farr, Nelson Pedreiro, "Simplified lasercom system architecture using a disturbance-free platform", Proc. SPIE 6105, Free-Space Laser Communication Technologies XVIII, 610505 (1 March 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.660264; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.660264
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