15, June 2018

ESA Open Invitation to Tender AO9154
Open Date: 13/06/2018
Closing Date: 06/09/2018 13:00:00

Status: ISSUED
Reference Nr.: 17.1ET.09
Prog. Ref.: Technology Developme
Budget Ref.: E/0901-01 – Technology Developme
Tender Type: C
Price Range: > 500 KEURO
Products: Satellites & Probes / RF / Microwave Communication (Platform and Payloads) / Antennas / Omnidirectional, Helix, Horn, Parabolic, Phased Arrays / Platform vs Payload
Techology Domains: Electromagnetic Technologies and Techniques / Antennas / Array Antennas and Standalone Radiators
Establishment: ESTEC
Directorate: Directorate of Tech, Eng. & Quality
Department: Electrical Engineering Department
Division: RF Payloads & Technology Division
Contract Officer: Ferreol, Audrey
Industrial Policy Measure: N/A – Not apply
Last Update Date: 13/06/2018
Update Reason: Tender issue

Future scientific exploration missions require the development of advanced antenna systems able to generate a number of independently reconfigurable beams both in transmission and reception. In particular, for the exploration of the Moon, the multibeam antenna embarked on a Cislunar habitat on EML2 or NRO orbit needs to provide at least three beams in order to keep a bidirectional link with at least the Moon surface elements, the Earth, and a Data Relay satellite (DRS) atEML1 point. This antenna, in order to adapt to different operations scenarios with significantly different link budgets, needs to modify dynamically its gain between 5 and 30 dBi andthe direction of pointing. The reconfigurability should be done via software and commendable from ground. One of the main challengesis the allowed dimension of the antenna needed to guarantee the high data rate. Furthermore, the design is complicated further because of the different link budgets and corresponding variable beam sizes associated to the multiple beams.Multibeam antennas with alimited (i.e. 4 to 8) number of reconfigurable beams have been previously developed mainly for Telecom applications. However, the reconfigurability requested for future exploration missions requires broader field of view and a large dynamic in antenna gain.A full breadboard has to be delivered as an outcome. Furthermore, a full test campaign shall be performed. In particular, the scan capabilities, the gain performance versus angle, and limited environmental tests are requested. The test plan shall include the validation test strategy, the test set-up, the identification of non-standard test equipment required for testing, and measurement accuracy and calibration errors.In the trade-off the use of higher frequencies (i.e 37 GHz for the uplink and 40 GHz for the downlink) shall be considered as well. The activity is important and strategic for the competitiveness of European Industry. The antenna may find otherapplications in future deep space habitats/explorations where operational and communication scenarios vary dynamically according tothe different type of mission and, therefore, different link budgets are needed.

If you wish to access the documents related to the Invitation to Tender, you have to log in to the ESA Portal.