31, October 2019

ESA Open Invitation to Tender AO10024
Open Date: 18/10/2019
Closing Date: 04/12/2019 13:00:00

Status: ISSUED
Reference Nr.: 19.112.17
Prog. Ref.: Technology Developme
Budget Ref.: E/0901-01 – Technology Developme
Tender Type: C
Price Range: > 500 KEURO
Products: Ground Segment / Ground Station / Antennas / Structure & Thermal, Servo / Mechanics, Reflectors, feeds and diplexers, Antenna Control Units (ACUs), Drive Systems, … / Ground Segment / Ground Station / Baseband equipment / Telemetry and Telecommand equipment, Tracking, Ranging and Doppler measurement equipment, CODECS, …
Technology Domains: Ground Station Systems and Networks / Ground Station System / Microwave and Optical Active/Passive Systems / Ground Station Systems and Networks / Ground Station System / TT&C, Radar and Optical Signal & Data Processing / Ground Station Systems and Networks / Ground Communications Networks / Advanced Ground Communication Networking Concepts / Ground Station Systems and Networks / Ground Station System / Advanced Ground Station Design Concepts
Establishment: ESOC
Directorate: Directorate of Operations
Department: Ground Systems Eng. & Innovation Dept.
Division: Ground Station Engineering Division
Contract Officer: Bednarek, Maren
Industrial Policy Measure: C1 – Activities in open competition limited to the non-Larg…
Last Update Date: 18/10/2019
Update Reason: Tender issue

Near-single-photon counting detection capability is required for optical links operating in the photon-starved regime. This is the case both for ‘Deep Space’ distances, but also from LEO where miniaturized space terminals become enabling. Furthermore, combining the functionality of pointing acquisition and tracking (PAT) and of the communications receiver in one detector device offers two strategic advantages: i) allowing a compact optical design ii) use of every precious photon for communications European on-board optical terminal suppliers are developing miniaturized optical terminals for the market of commercial small LEO satellites and for Lunar commercial initiatives. European Service Providers at the same time seek to deploy a network of small optical ground stations. This activity aims to bring forth a near-single-photon-counting 2D acquisition / tracking / communications detector for the 1550nm wavelength range, and encompasses the following tasks: a) Critical Review of functional and performance requirements; b) Identification of critical areas in each building block: – detector topology for simultaneous PAT and communication functions, – read-out integrated circuit (ROIC) architecture, – detection layer epitaxy and APD, – optical coupling; c) Experimental proof-of-concept validation on Laboratory Test Structures: – functionality (ultra-fast central ROI and slow overall readout), – performance (photon detection, bandwidth, jitter). All critical building blocks of the detector shall be developed and validated / characterized: – Detection Layer, – Read-out circuit (ROIC) architecture, – Detection layer to ROIC coupling, – Central, high-bandwidth communication region, – Optical coupling.Procurement Policy: C(1) = Activity restricted to non-prime contractors (incl. SMEs). For additional information pleasego to EMITS news “Industrial Policy measures for non-primes, SMEs and RD entities in ESA programmes”.

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