Engineering Inter-spacecraft laser links

CGA scientists contributed in designing the twin GRACE Follow-On satellites. Credit NASA-JPL.

Inter-satellite laser links are an emerging technology with applications in Earth Observation, telecommunications, security, and, the focus of the CGA space technology group. Inter-satellite laser ranging is an enabling technology to for geodesy/gravity recovery for global water or climate monitoring on Earth (NASA/Germany GRACE Follow-On mission), planetary science like NASA’s lunar GRAIL mission, and the same technology needed to detect the merging of super-massive black hole mergers (e.g. LISA mission).

This project is designed to bring together all the required physics and engineering needed to form and maintain a laser-link between satellites. We collaborate with NASA and European counterparts on these tasks adapting to and optimizing the techniques.  


Updated:  2 July 2021/Responsible Officer:  Science Web/Page Contact:  Science Web