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Advances in Ground Transmitters for the NASA Deep Space Network

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4 Author(s)
Vodonos, Y.I. ; California Inst. of Technol., Pasadena ; Conroy, B.L. ; Losh, D.L. ; Silva, A.

The Deep Space Network (DSN), managed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory for NASA, is equipped with multiple microwave transmitters ranging in average radiated power from 200 W to 400 kW. The transmitters are used for routine or emergency communication with spacecraft, for navigation, and for radio science tasks. The latest advances in transmitter engineering were implemented in a new generation of 20-kW dual-band transmitters developed for the DSN 34-m beam waveguide antennas. Innovations include additional X-band communication capability for near Earth missions, new c, automated calibration, improved and expanded computerized monitoring and diagnostics, reduced cabling, and improved maintainability. The innovations were very beneficial for the DSN ldquooverloadrdquo during the Mars 2003/2004 missions and will benefit other missions throughout the next decade. This paper describes the current design of the new transmitters and possible future developments.

Published in:

Proceedings of the IEEE  (Volume:95 ,  Issue: 10 )