News 2018

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Expert Discussion on SATCOM for 5G in the German Bundestag

March 20, 2018: Andreas Knopp and Christian Hofmann followed an invitation of a group of Bundestag delegates concerned with the technology selection for the next generation high-speed data network in Germany. Together with a group of five other experts from the leading German air and space industry, the professors advocated the selection of high throughput communication satellites (HTS) to augmented the fast broadband network rollout in Germany’s rural areas. With funding of the German Space Agency the expert group has recently shown that a single satellite could serve about 200.000 households, having no or only very slow internet access, with highly reliable >50 Mbit/sec connections. Given the fact that the rollout of terrestrial fiber as well as the implementation of a dense 5G terrestrial network are both very slow as well as extremely expensive, the satellite technology offers a powerful and very cost effective medium to quickly connect the many unserved households in the German outback. Since the recently signed coalition agreement of the governing parties CDU/CSU and SPD promises a 100% coverage of German households with at least 50 Mbit/sec in the near future, the Bundestag delegates showed high interest and motivation to consider satellite technology within their technology mix. In this context, the MIMO technology developed by the Chair of Signal Processing is considered as an enabler to push satellite data rates and pave the way for successful business models built on satellite broadband access. The meeting took place in the parliament office building „Paul-Löbe-Haus“ in Berlin.

Frequency Extension for Reference Antenna “DORY”

February 5, 2018: We have recently extended the frequency bands of our transportable ground station antenna “DORY”, a transportable 4.6 m Gregorian Offset antenna. The new X-band feed complements the measurement capabilities for this antenna so that now the C-band, the X-band and the Ku-band are covered. The measurement antenna DORY is part of the Munich Center for Space Communications, a unique measurement and test facility for satellite and space communications. This frequency band extension enables us to conduct, for example, channel measurements in the X-band or test our latest waveform developments using military X-band capacity from one of the two Bundeswehr satellites COMSATBw-1 or COMSATBw-2. With the new X-band capability for DORY we are able to support the Bundeswehr test and verification activities under the umbrella of SatCERTBw.

MIMO lecture at ESA SatNEx Group

January 29, 2018 Being among the leading research groups on MIMO over Satellite, our MIMO research group has been approached by the chairperson of the European Satellite Communication Network of Excellence (SatNEx) at European Space Agency (ESA) to give an invited lecture on our research at ESA-ESTEC in Noordwijk (The Netherlands). In front of an audience of about 40 renowned SATCOM experts from industry and academia, in his lecture entitled “A Decade of Research on Spatial Multiplexing over Satellite: Major Steps from Theory to MIMO Applications” Prof. Andreas Knopp presented the genesis of our institute’s MIMO research. Starting with the basic idea of spatial multiplexing for SATCOM applications, which was originally published by Robert Schwarz and Andreas Knopp in 2008, the MIMO group was successful in bringing this technology to maturity. The impressive results are more than 30 scientific publications, a number of patents, and two over-the-air demonstrators.
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