The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency otherwise known as DARPA has this week announced the selection of Intel for Phase 1 of the Space-Based Adaptive Communications Node (Space-BACN) program. The program has been created to design and build a low-cost, reconfigurable optical communications terminal that will translate information between diverse satellite constellations.
“A Space-BACN satellite terminal will enable communications between satellite constellations, enabling data to be sent anywhere around the planet at the speed of light.”
“DARPA is planning for a future where tens of thousands of satellites from multiple private sector organizations deliver broadband services from low earth orbit (LEO). The goal of Space-BACN is to create an “internet” of satellites, enabling seamless communication between military/government and commercial/civil satellite constellations. The program will facilitate collaboration among partners to ensure that the terminal being designed is reconfigurable to provide interoperability among the participating constellation providers.”
Intel joins DARPA Space-BACN
“DARPA selected Intel for Technical Area 2 (TA2) along with II-VI Aerospace and Defense and Arizona State University to design a reconfigurable optical modem that will support both current and new communication standards and protocols to enable interoperability among satellite constellations. Technical Area 1 (TA1) focuses on the development of an optical aperture or “head,” which is responsible for pointing acquisition and tracking, as well as the optical transmit and receive functions. DARPA has selected the following organizations for this technical area: CACI Inc., MBRYONICS and Mynaric.”
“TA1 will interface to TA2 using single-mode optical fiber. In Technical Area 3 (TA3), DARPA selected constellation providers – Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX), Telesat, SpaceLink, Viasat and Kuiper Government Solutions (KGS) LLC (an Amazon subsidiary) – to identify critical command and control elements required to support cross-constellation optical intersatellite link communications and develop the schema necessary to interface between Space-BACN and commercial partner constellations.”
Source : DARPA
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