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The use of optical communication links is a growing and promising technology, with applications spreading over many areas of telecommunication. This paper will present the results of an investigation on interplanetary communication requirements for future space mission which was done under an ESA contract and SatNEx II. From the user point of view, the technology behind the data transmission is irrelevant. However, when applying optical wireless links, high data rates could be realized with less effort compared to RF links. It should be clarified how optical communication links can provide well working solutions for a growing demand on data rates. Moreover, some first system designs with corresponding link budget calculations were performed.
Date of Conference: 9-11 Sept. 2009