QuadSAT has completed an antenna validation mission with space services operator, Telespazio. Using the QuadSAT drone-based system, it tested a large 17-metre antenna situated at Fucino Space Center, in Italy. Other capabilities of QuadSAT drone-based testing solution, such as ground station tracking performance analysis, were also demonstrated as part of the mission.
QuadSAT worked with Telespazio to perform the radiation pattern measurements of the large, 17 metre, antenna. Due to the size of the antenna, QuadSAT carried out careful planning and a detailed site survey ahead of the mission. The measurements were taken from a nearby mountain peak, at 12 km from the antenna.
The radiation pattern measurements enabled QuadSAT to provide Telespazio with important data about the performance of the antenna, as well as extracting information on the shape and size of the main beam and level and position of sidelobes. This has enabled the operator to ensure the antenna is operating at optimum efficiency.
Telespazio is a global company that provides services that include the design and development of space systems, the management of launch services and in-orbit satellite control, Earth observation services, integrated communications, navigation and tracking satellite and scientific programmes. Emanuele Belloni, Installation, Integration and Test Manager, Telespazio, commented: “We believe that innovation is the true driving force of Telespazio’s business, for this reason we have established a multi-year cooperation with Quadsat. Our 60-years’ experience in space domain, together with the Quadsat system, gave positive results to measure our 17-meters antenna. We were really impressed about this innovative approach that has the potential to dramatically reduce the challenges and costs normally associated with testing.”
Andrian Buchi, Chief Technical Officer, QuadSAT, added: “Quality assurance and reliability are critically important for satellite communication service providers like Telespazio, and this is achieved through effective and reliable testing of the ground segment. This campaign has demonstrated how our drone-based system can be used as an alternative to existing fixed beacon-based methods for testing large antennas. The mission has also enabled Telespazio to accurately test and verify one of its large antennas in a cost-effective way.”