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In-Orbit-Verification of Optical Clock Technologies

Schuldt, Thilo and Wörner, Lisa and Braxmaier, Claus and COFROS, Team (2019) In-Orbit-Verification of Optical Clock Technologies. In: 70th International Astronautical Congress, IAC 2019. International Astronautical Congress, 21.-25. Oktober 2019, Washington.

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Official URL: https://iafastro.directory/iac/paper/id/52988/summary/


Optical frequency references are an essential tool for many applications in space, including Earth observation, fundamental physics and navigation and ranging. They are either needed as light source for a high-sensitivity inter-spacecraft optical metrology system, as part of a payload enabling tests of fundamental physics or as a high accuracy timebase for global navigation satellite systems (GNSS). Examples are the space-based gravitational wave detector LISA (Laser Interferometer Space Antenna), future missions measuring the Earth’s gravitational field within the NGGM (Next Generation Gravity Mission) program and the proposed space-based test of Special Relativity BOOST (BOOst Symmetry Test). Furthermore, new concepts for satellite navigation foresee optical frequency references in combination with optical links used for synchronization, communication and ranging. Technology development for future operation of optical frequency references in space is currently carried out where crucial design parameters are compactness and rigidity. First setups of iodine-based frequency references on Elegant Breadboard (EBB) and Engineering Model (EM) level have been realized in a cooperation of DLR Bremen, University of Bremen and Humboldt-University Berlin and a compact iodine reference was successfully flown on a sounding rocket within the project JOKARUS, lead by HU Berlin. A long-term stable cavity-based system is currently developed at DLR Bremen/ University of Bremen in the context of the BOOST mission; development of an Engineering Model in the context of NGGM and as clock laser for an optical clock is currently ongoing within the OSRC (Optical Stabilizing Reference Cavity) project by ESA. Optical terminals are commercially provided by Tesat GmbH, developed in cooperation with DLR Oberpfaffenhofen. We present a specific mission concept for in-orbit verification of optical frequency references on a small satellite in low-Earth orbit, called COFROS (Compact Optical Frequency References on a Satellite). The payload consists of an iodine- and a cavity-based frequency reference, together with an optical frequency comb and a GNSS receiver and, eventually, an optical terminal. The optical frequency references are operated at a wavelength of 1064 nm and directly compared in a beat measurement. Additionally, both references are compared to GNSS (GPS; Galileo) via the optical frequency comb and the GNSS receiver. The optical link is used for synchronization of a ground-based oscillator to the space-based optical frequency reference. A first mission scenario was worked out and a preliminary budget estimation shows compatibility with the DLR compact satellite bus.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/130415/
Document Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)
Title:In-Orbit-Verification of Optical Clock Technologies
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iD
Schuldt, ThiloDLR-RY, BremenUNSPECIFIED
Wörner, LisaZARM, Uni BremenUNSPECIFIED
Braxmaier, ClausDLR, BremenUNSPECIFIED
Date:21 October 2019
Journal or Publication Title:70th International Astronautical Congress, IAC 2019
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:No
Keywords:frequency references, laser interferometry
Event Title:International Astronautical Congress
Event Location:Washington
Event Type:international Conference
Event Dates:21.-25. Oktober 2019
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space System Technology
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R SY - Space System Technology
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Systems Engineering Optische Systeme (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof , Bremen , Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Space Systems
Institute of Communication and Navigation
Institute of Optical Sensor Systems
Deposited By: Hamann, Ines
Deposited On:13 Nov 2019 07:17
Last Modified:24 Feb 2022 17:28

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