[SatNews] General Dynamics SATCOM Technologies received a contract from PASCOM, a satellite communications integrator in Chile, for an advanced Earth station antenna reflector and communications signal feed design.
The new design both transmits and receives Ku- and Direct Broadcast Satellite (DBS)-band communications simultaneously. The Earth station comprises a nine-meter antenna and six-port feed that will be produced by General Dynamics SATCOM Technologies and delivered to PASCOM for integration and installation. PASCOM will then deliver the new dual-band Earth station to CLARO, a multi-media entertainment and service provider whose satellite-based television network delivers on-demand programming directly to homes and businesses throughout Latin America.
SATCOM Technologies engineering team developed the new Earth station to transmit television programming simultaneously at the Ku- (14 GHz) and DBS-bands (18 GHz) to multiple satellites that then distribute programming back to CLARO's television customers.
Developing the new dual-band Earth station came down to solving a physics principle that simultaneous transmission of Ku- and DBS-bands causes intermodulation or interference on the Earth station's receive band. The problem was solved by creating a new Earth station design with low Passive Intermodulation capabilities accomplished by re-designing the antenna reflector and adding a six-port feed.
Mike DiBiase, vice president and general manager of C4ISR Technologies for General Dynamics Mission Systems, said, "This innovative, dual-band Earth Station will provide significant cost, integration and installation savings for CLARO since they only need one Earth station to transmit on two different frequency bands."
"The result is a sophisticated Earth station antenna that can simultaneously support direct broadcast satellite transmissions as well as fixed satellite transmissions over the Ku-band," said Tim Shroyer, chief technical officer for SATCOM Technologies. "This new design permits CLARO to save a considerable amount of money by installing a single, more capable Earth station rather than the previous approach of using two less capable Earth stations to support both requirements."