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Generic SDR-bAsed Multifunctional spAce LINK (GAMALINK)
Start date: Jan 1, 2013, End date: Dec 31, 2014 PROJECT  FINISHED 

When talking about communications, terrestrial technologies are far more advanced than those applied in space. Therefore, spin-in of terrestrial technologies should be seriously pursued to provide the technology push that can lead space markets beyond the current state of the art. Therefore, GAMALINK will combine expertise on satellite navigation, ad hoc networking, attitude determination, antenna design and beam forming into a compact common technological platform, suitable for LEO small satellite missions. The hardware platform will be based on Software-Defined Radio (SDR), an innovative terrestrial concept that enables the development of various waveforms using a common hardware platform. On top of this radio platform a set of different techniques will be implemented: mobile ad hoc networking, an enabler for creating ISLs, attitude determination of one station relative to another, through the measurement of carrier phase delays between signals transmitted from multiple antennas, GPS waveform reading and signal decoding and ranging between different satellites, based solely on the transmission of communication signals. GAMALINK will also focus on innovative antenna and RF frontend design and beam forming techniques, trying to develop hardware solutions that can cope with the flexibility introduced by SDR. A key feature of this idea is in fact innovation. On one hand it proposes to bring SDR to space, one breakthrough terrestrial technology acting as an enabler for laying several other state of the art techniques on top of it. On the other hand it offers an integrated solution for both communications and attitude and orbit control purposes, targeting the increasingly popular small satellite market. However, GAMALINK’s ultimate goal is to prove the applicability of a wide range of technologies in space, in an attempt to leverage their technology maturity level both in terrestrial and in space applications.
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