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Development of an Optical Slice for an RF and Optical Software Defined RadioA key component in the Integrated Radio and Optical Communications project at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Glenn Research Center (GRC) is the radio frequency (RF) and optical software defined radio (SDR). A NASA RF SDR might consist of a general purpose processor to run the Space Telecommunications Radio System (STRS) Architecture for radio command and control, a reconfigurable signal processing device such as a field programmable gate array (FPGA) which houses the waveform, and a digital to analog converter (DAC) for transmitting data. Prior to development, SDR architecture trades on how to combine the RF and optical elements were studied. A modular architecture with physically separate RF and optical hardware slices was chosen and the optical slice of an SDR was designed and developed. The Harris AppSTARTM platform, which consists of an FPGA processing platform with a mezzanine card targeted for RF communications, was used as the base platform in prototyping the optical slice. A serially concatenated pulse position modulation (SCPPM) optical waveform was developed. The waveform follows the standard described in the Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS) Optical Communications Coding and Synchronization Red Book. A custom optical mezzanine printed circuit board card was developed at NASA GRC for optical transmission. The optical mezzanine card replaces the DAC, which is used in the transmission of RF signals. This paper describes RF and optical SDR architecture trades, the Harris AppSTAR platform, the design of the SCPPM waveform, and the development of the optical mezzanine card.
Document ID
Document Type
Nappier, Jennifer M.
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Lantz, Nicholas C.
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH, United States)
Date Acquired
August 27, 2018
Publication Date
January 27, 2018
Subject Category
Communications And Radar
Report/Patent Number
Meeting Information
SPIE Photonics West LASE 2018(San Francisco, CA)
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 405034.
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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