New Sensing Capabilities for Space Situational Awareness
Agency / Branch:
DOD / USAF
AeroAstro proposes to develop a wideband, broad area coverage RF sensor (antenna and receiver) capable of detecting the electromagnetic interference (EMI) generated during a spacecraft's nominal operations. This EMI is an exploitable form of RF MASINT, specifically unintended radiated emissions (URE), and could provide useful information if detected, identified, and characterized. Development of a wideband RF sensor could allow detection of space objects and could cue or tip-off more capable imaging sensors for focused characterization. In addition to detecting presence, a wideband RF sensor could also be used to evaluate a spacecraft's health and on-orbit status and provide characterization information of its hardware, equipment, and components. AeroAstro's extensive research into terrestrial URE collection and our initial testing against actual spacecraft components has revealed that an effective small size, low weight, power, and cost space-qualified sensor could be developed and potentially integrated as a standard payload to future high value space assets or as an anomaly characterization payload on small microsat/nanosat class satellites.
Small Business Information at Submission:
20145 Ashbrook Place Ashburn, VA 20147
Number of Employees: