ROBUST CUBESAT INSTRUMENTATION AND ADVANCED GPS SPACE WEATHER MONITORING EQUIPMENT
Space Weather Monitoring Solutions
ASTRA™ is committed to the on-going effort to provide our customers ever-improving state-of-the-art programmable instrumentation for monitoring space weather from anywhere in the world to space. Even if your space weather application requires deployment of GPS receivers in remote regions or oceanic environments, ASTRA is pioneering autonomous instruments with unparalleled performance and versatility.
ASTRA’s GPS program for monitoring space weather and characterizing ionospheric scintillation represents an SBIR “success story”. After years of development from Phase I, through Phase II, and then on to Phase III commercialization, the CASES GPS Space Weather Monitor and resulting product line demonstrate ASTRA’s capabilities to take a research concept and develop it to an operational product.
More and more, arrays of dual-frequency GPS receivers are being used to monitor the ionosphere. Ionospheric total electron content (TEC) is derived using dual-frequency phase measurements. The variations of GPS signal amplitude and phase are used to measure the magnitude of ionospheric irregularities.
Superior GPS-based Ionospheric Monitoring Instruments
RIO GPS Space Weather Monitor
A smaller size, weight, and power GPS receiver designed to provide autonomous operation from remote platforms
ASTRA’s CubeSat innovations continually strive to meet compatibility requirements for small platforms. Historically, orbiting topside sounders have been large, expensive, and power-hungry. For platforms as small as 15cm x 10cm x 10cm, CubeSat-compatible instrumentation must be low-weight, miniature in size, and low in power consumption.
ASTRA is working with USU/SDL to develop a CubeSat-compatible sounder which will enable topside measurements of the ionosphere and provide critical data over the oceans from a constellation of CubeSats.
ASTRA is working with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to design, build, and test a miniaturized neutral wind instrument to measure vector winds in Low Earth Orbit(LEO) under all solar and magnetic conditions. The 2.06 THz Oxygen-line Radiometer (THOR) will provide critical neutral-wind information in the mesosphere and lower thermosphere from a CubeSat. This robust and compact instrument provides comprehensive spatial measurements currently not afforded by any in-situ measurement technique. Benefits/applications include:
Understanding and predicting satellite drag as a result of vector winds
Gravity wave filtering in the upper atmosphere
Vertical profiling of neutral winds
Power Distribution Unit
Customize with multiple battery pack, power board and MPPT board configurations
Multiple Battery Configurations
Supports 4 and 8 series of Li-Ion, LiFeP04, and 12/24 volt Lead Acid
Host Interface Control
Firmware allows for configuration and control of all channels and ports with dashboard
Air-8, Water-8, Space-6, Land-8
Over Current and Short Circuit Protection
Reacts in < 20 µS to protect payloads from failure
True MPPT Design
Allows for extracting the maximum power from solar panels
Virtual Channel Logic
1 or more ports can be grouped into a single logical channel to allow simultaneous power control
Watch Dog Timer
Timer with local or Host control reset