The large potential of small satellites and clusters of satellites has been identified and proven in the past. However, satellite clusters and their coordination represent very high technological challenges. This feasibility study analyzes in detail the technological realization of small satellite formations for earth observations and for data transfers. It puts special emphasis on the required communication and navigation technologies. These technologies represent the basis for a smoothly functioning system, which is confronted by different types of perturbations such as drifting, the harsh environmental conditions such as radiation and the large temperature variations. This feasibility study was sponsored by Bayerisches Staatsministerium für Wirtschaft, Infrastruktur, Verkehr und Technologie (Bavarian ministry of state for economy, infrastructure, traffic and technology). Zentrum für Telematik e.V. coordinates the project and the study will be executed together with Fraunhofer Institut IIS and the chair for information technology VII of the University of Würzburg. It also represents the required preparatory work for the project application "NaKoF - navigation and communication technologies for small satellite formations".
Bayerisches Staatsministerium für Wirtschaft, Infrastruktur, Verkehr und Technologie (Bavarian ministry of state for economy, infrastructure, traffic and technology)
Zentrum für Telematik, Gerbrunn (Leitung);
Fraunhofer IIS, Erlangen;
Lehrstuhl für Informatik 7 - Robotik und Telematik, Universität Würzburg;