14, April 2022

ESA Open Invitation to Tender: 1-11140
Open Date: 30/03/2022 11:16 CEST
Closing Date: 14/06/2022 13:00 CEST

Objective: The objective of this activity is the development of a high optical power transmission system for lunar uplink communication. The transmission will comply with the high photon efficiency (HPE) standard in CCSDS targeting uplink data rates of up to 2.1Gbps. Targeted Improvements: The development can provide a 100 times improvement of the uplink data rates to the Moon. Description: An unprecedented number of lunar missions are planned to be launched in this decade covering a variety of applications: from lunar science orbiters and human and robotic surface exploration, to relay orbiters supporting landed crewed vehicles and in-orbit laboratories. The demand of data rate in the uplink is expected to grow by 2024 and will require high-rate data transmissions and in particular a specific communications architecture and concept of operations, which have been defined by the Interagency Operation Advisory Group (IOAG). According to the IOAG the High Photon Efficiency (HPE) regime (CCSDS 141) has the potential to meet data rate requirements for all lunar links. The main goal of this activity is to exploit the optional data transmission concept offered by the HPE regime and conceive an efficient data uplink mechanism based on the use of advanced coding (e.g. LDPC) to be implemented in a high power HPE compatible ground transmitter prototype targeting data rates up to 2.1 Gbps and mean power levels up to 1kW. In particular the activity shall focus on:- The extension of the CCSDS 141.0-B-1 and 142.0-B-1 standards to allow high data rate transmission e.g. implementing nested outer modulations;- The definition of uplink data transmission waveform with the goal of reducing decoding complexity at receiving end, using existing coding schemes (e.g. CCSDS LDPC Low- Density Parity Check);- The design, manufacturing and testing of a high-power (>1kW) ground-based laser system based on commercially available items with the dual function of HPE ground beacon system and data uplink transmitter to enable Earth-to-Moon links targeting data rates up to 2.1 Gbps;- Addressing the challenges in handling and transmitting high power laser beams via optical telescopes;- End-to-end testing of data transmission.The prototype will meet the communications requirements of the numerous missions at lunar distance requiring bidirectional and high-rate data transmission (e.g. human and robotic exploration). The prototype shall be integrated and tested via an ESA optical ground station over horizontal links between Tenerife and La Palma . This activity could contribute to the ESA Moonlight initiative in the preparation of a lunar communication infrastructure in particular covering the gap of missing high-speed uplink in the mentionedstandards. Procurement Policy: C(2) = A relevant participation (in terms of quality and quantity) of non-primes (incl. SMEs) is required. For additional information please go to this link.

Estabilishment: ESTEC
ECOS Required: No
Classified: No
Price Range: > 500 KEURO
Authorised Contact Person: Claudia Ria Piesche
Initiating Service: TIA-TO
IP Measure: C2
Prog. Reference: E/0534-05A – OP-Other Act. Prod.
Tender Type: Open Competition
Technology Keywords: 16-C-VI-Optical Communications
Products Keywords: 2-G-1.1-c-Laser sources, modulators / 2-G-1.1-d-Telescopes

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