TRW Develops Miniature Frequency Upconverter For Astrolink Ka-band Satellites
TRW Space and Electronics Group within TRW Inc. [TRW] said it has developed a miniature frequency upconverter for the communications payload on the Ka-band satellites it is building as its part of the Astrolink partnership.
The upconverter, which is based on TRW’s proprietary gallium arsenide integrated circuits, weighs only about one ounce and dramatically lowers the size and weight of the satellites’ communications payload.
It will convert uplink traffic to the Ka-band downlink frequency band at about 20 GHz. “This highly miniaturized upconverter shows the huge savings in payload weight, size and power possible with TRW’s advanced technology,” said Paul Borzcik, vice president and program manager of the company’s Astrolink program.
“This tiny unit replaces equipment that only a few years ago would have required a box weighing several pounds. Moreover, the use of integrated circuits and automated assembly greatly cuts the manufacturing costs to produce this item,” he said.