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ACTS aeronautical terminal experiment: System description and link analysisDuring the summer of 1994, the performance of an experimental mobile satellite communication system was demonstrated to the industry and government representatives by the NASA Lewis Research Center (LeRC) and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). The system was based on the Advanced Communications Technology Satellite (ACTS) and consisted of an K-/Ka-band active MMIC phased array antenna system, ACTS Mobile Terminal (AMT) and Link Evaluation Terminal (LET). A LeRC research aircraft, Learjet Model 25, was outfitted with the active MMIC phased array antenna system and AMT and served as the experimental 20/30 Ghz aeronautical terminal. The LET at LeRC in Cleveland, OH was interfaced with portions of fixed-AMT equipment and together provided the gateway station functions including ACTS satellite interface and Public Service Telephone Network (PSTN) interface. The ACTS was operated in its Microwave Switch Matrix (MSM) mode with a spot beam for the Learjet and another spot beam dedicated to the LET. The Learjet was flown over several major cities across the US and demonstrated the feasibility of full-duplex compressed voice link for an aeronautical terminal through the 20/30 Ghz ACTS satellite channel. This paper will present a technical description of the system including the MMIC phased array antenna system, AMT, Learjet, LET and ACTS satellite. The array antenna system consists of a 30 Ghz transmit array (LeRC/Texas Instruments) and two 20 Ghz receive arrays (USAF Rome Lab/Boeing and Martin Marietta), each one very small with sufficient performance for satellite voice link. The AMT consists of 2.4/4.8/9.6 Kbps voice coder/decoder, modem, PSTN interface and RF/IF converters. Link analysis will be presented and compared to the actual performance data collected during the demonstration flights.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Sohn, Philip (NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH United States)
Raquet, Charles (NASA Lewis Research Center Cleveland, OH United States)
Reinhart, Richard (Unisys Corp. Salt Lake City, UT United States)
Nakamura, Dan (Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA United States)
Date Acquired
August 17, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1995
Publication Information
Publication: Proceedings of the Fourth International Mobile Satellite Conference (IMSC 1995)
Subject Category
Communications and Radar
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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IDRelationTitle19960022452Analytic PrimaryProceedings of the Fourth International Mobile Satellite Conference (IMSC 1995)
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