Laser satellite establishes gigabit data links in space: Page 2 of 2

August 08, 2019 //By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Laser satellite establishes gigabit data links in space
With the launch of the EDRS-C communications satellite on 6 August 2019, a milestone has been reached for the European Data Relay Satellite System (EDRS): the foundation has been laid for a worldwide unique network of geostationary relay satellites that can transport data volumes of up to 1.8 gigabits per second to Earth using laser terminals.

The programme's first distribution node, EDRS-A, was launched on 29 January 2016 and has since offered its relay services for the transmission of data from four Sentinel satellites of the EU's Copernicus Earth Observation Programme. The satellites use EDRS-A services on a daily basis. To date, more than 23,000 inter-satellite links have been successfully sent to Earth. EDRS-C will now double this capacity.

After a test and validation phase, the system will be fully operational with EDRS-C by the end of 2019. Parallel to the construction and launch of the existing EDRS satellites, technological development is continuing: LCT technology is to be used to increase the terminal's data rate from 1.8 to 3.6 gigabits per second and to increase the possible distance for the connection from 40,000 kilometres to 80,000 kilometres.

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