QuadSAT, a leading drone-based antenna testing solutions provider, has collaborated with the European Space Agency (ESA) to develop a new Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) testing solution. The UAS system will comply with the industry-wide antenna performance protocol, SOMAP (Satellite Operators’ Minimum Antenna Performance requirements) and the type approval test requirements for other satellite operators.
QuadSAT, with technical support from satellite solutions expert, GVF and the Danish Technological Institute, will establish that its UAS testing capabilities can deliver SOMAP type-approvals for the satellite communications industry. QuadSAT uses drone technology to test and calibrate satellite and VSAT antennas autonomously, mimicking an orbiting satellite that can simulate a ship or aircraft’s motion. This method enables highly accurate testing while drastically reducing downtime.
The development of SOMAP recommendations has been referenced in previous ESA projects. GVF, through the Mutual Recognition Working Group (MRA-WG), has been pivotal in defining the framework, which is mutually recognized across the satellite industry. The SOMAP framework establishes the minimum performance recommendations for satellite service providers and serves as a complement to the formal SOMAP recommendations.
Speaking on the collaboration, Joakim Espeland, CEO, QuadSAT, stated that, as proven by its past projects, ESA’s ethos is based around promoting the use of high-quality, industry-compliant technologies to ensure that the industry works effectively and harmoniously. By providing and expanded test capability for demonstrating compliance with SOMAP recommendations and other satellite service provider requirements, QuadSAT’s UAS technology will be able to offer operators a highly accurate and effective form of testing. This will result in savings of both time and money for qualifying new satellite communications products.
Founded in March 2017, QuadSAT’s mobile antenna testing system provides users with affordable, accessible and accurate antenna testing and calibration. The system utilizes a custom-built RF payload, unmanned aircrafts, and mathematical algorithms in order to effectively simulate satellites and perform critical tests in determining antenna performance. Its a cost-effective solution which has been developed to meet industry-wide standards and move antenna testing away from testing facilities and into the field. The solution increases the ease of testing and enhances spectrum awareness and promotes minimal energy consumption allowing for cleaner transmissions with less RF interference.
QuadSAT recently secured £700,000 seed funding via Danish Growth Fund, Vaekstfonden and specialist space-tech venture fund, Seraphim Capital to boost its future prospects and development.