22 May 2015 Space situational awareness applications for radio astronomy assets
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Abstract
The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) builds, operates, and maintains a suite of premier radio antennas, including the 100m aperture Green Bank Telescope, the largest fully-steerable antenna in the world. For more than five decades the NRAO has focused on astrophysics, providing researchers with the most advanced instruments possible: large apertures, extremely low-noise receivers, and signal processors with high frequency and time resolution. These instruments are adaptable to Space Situational Awareness (SSA) tasks such as radar detection of objects in near-Earth and cis-Lunar space, high accuracy orbit determination, object surveillance with passive methods, and uplink and downlink communications. We present the capabilities of antennas and infrastructure at the NRAO Green Bank Observatory in the context of SSA tasks, and discuss what additions and modifications would be necessary to achieve SSA goals while preserving existing radio astronomy performance. We also discuss how the Green Bank Observatory’s surrounding topography and location within the National Radio Quiet Zone will enhance SSA endeavors.
© (2015) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Galen Watts, John M. Ford, H. Alyson Ford, "Space situational awareness applications for radio astronomy assets", Proc. SPIE 9469, Sensors and Systems for Space Applications VIII, 94690N (22 May 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2177235; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2177235
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