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Summers D.,Systems Engineering and Assessment , Ltd. | Clark M.,University of Nottingham | Stockford I.,University of Nottingham | Achamfuo-Yeboah S.,University of Nottingham | Pereira Do Carmo J.,European Space Agency
Acta Astronautica | Year: 2010

The modulated light camera technology, developed by the University of Nottingham, illuminates a target with modulated laser light and measures the distance to the target scene by the phase change of the return, across an imaging array. This enables the measurement of distance to different parts of the scene simultaneously, on a pixel by pixel basis. A prototype camera has been assembled under the ESA Innovation Triangle Initiative and supplied to SEA where there has been an assessment of the potential of this technology for a range of space applications, including Rover Vision, Rendezvous and Docking, and monitoring the deployment of large structures. The supplied device has been tested with appropriate modulation schemes. Finally, a roadmap has been devised to show the developments needed to take this test system forward to a fully fledged spaceborne instrument. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Tejal T.,Space Generation Advisory Council | Bacon A.,Systems Engineering and Assessment , Ltd.
62nd International Astronautical Congress 2011, IAC 2011 | Year: 2011

Human and Environmental security from space activities is one of the most current critical topics discussed globally. The threats we face such as climate change, pollution, water scarcity, etc are not lightly to be taken. Dealing with these emerging issues is very critical and should be focused primarily however there are issues not so different from diese that also need a good amount of attention such as a Near Earth Objects threat. Along with the increase in the discovery of these objects, the threat they pose to the Earth has increased with it. The percentage of a NEO collision is same as the percentage of a person being hit by a bus. This fact makes this issue a very important one as from previous knowledge of collisions (example: Tunguska event), even a small asteroid can cause massive damage to humans as well as the environment. These damages are not constricted to a city or a small part of a country, some collisions have a potential to wipe an entire country off this planet or worse an entire civilization. Research is carried out regarding the issue of damages caused by these objects from previous event which will help create a strategy to help prevent such large damage. The initial strategy will depend on prediction of a collision by tracking and recording its movements. The prediction will also indicate a position of collision. With this information and timeframe of the collision, a pre-planned solution can be obtained. Along with strategy planning, the countries have a responsibility to evacuate and protect its citizens. This should be taken into consideration when taking decision regarding human damage and survival rates. Survival system for human and environment should be put in place to provide help on decisions during a small scaled asteroid or space debris collision. Constructed series of legal parameters in case of response and mitigation have been developed by the Association of Space Explorers but these parameters should be internationally accepted and establish with the Space Law Treaty. This research will develop a strategic plan with considering legal parameters from different previous collisions to help prevent and survive the next one. It will also look into a constructive way to approach the space agencies and industry to accept these strategies. Copyright ©2010 by the International Astronautical Federation. All rights reserved.

Bridges J.C.,University of Leicester | Guest M.,Systems Engineering and Assessment , Ltd.
Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part G: Journal of Aerospace Engineering | Year: 2011

Mars sample return (MSR) mission planning requires a high level of planetary protection in order to break the chain of contact between Mars and the terrestrial biosphere. As a focus of MSR is the search for life, it is also imperative that a minimal amount of terrestrial contamination is taken to Mars on the mission. For these reasons, spacecraft cleaning of up to Viking levels will be needed, adding to the cost and complexity of the mission. Experience gained in Mars missions in the USA and Europe including and after Viking will be used. New technologies such as sample sealing in Mars orbit are also required. The recent identification of special regions on Mars where liquid water may have been present within the recent geological past has led to a revision of planetary protection constraints for missions such as MSR which might wish to visit them. Approximately 500 g (five to eight samples) are envisaged in the first MSR within the 2020s. This requires a sample receiving facility to assess the threat to the terrestrial biosphere prior to analyses of the samples by the wider scientific community. This will be operated at biohazard level 4 - the highest level. Long-term curation of returned samples has planetary protection constraints but also challenges in maintaining the pristine nature of the samples as far as possible as they are moved from the oxidizing, reactive Mars surface to Earth.

Kant G.W.,ASTRON | Patel P.D.,Systems Engineering and Assessment , Ltd. | Wijnholds S.J.,ASTRON | Ruiter M.,ASTRON | Van Der Wal E.,ASTRON
IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation | Year: 2011

We present the design and development of the electronic multi-beam radio astronomy concept (EMBRACE), a demonstrator that is part of the European contribution towards the square kilometre array, which is currently being designed by the global radio astronomical community. One of the design goals of EMBRACE is to demonstrate the applicability of phased array technology for use in future radio telescopes. The EMBRACE system will ultimately consist of two stations, the largest of which comprises over 20,000 elements and has a physical area of about 160 m2. The antenna system, covering the 5001500 MHz frequency range, is designed as a dual polarized system, however only the signals for one polarization are processed. To obtain a cost effective design, RF analog beam-forming is performed on tile level close to the radiators. The demonstrator is designed to provide two independent beams such that different parts of the sky can be observed simultaneously. First results from part of the array are presented and discussed. The results show that the complete data path is functional. Since the design resembles a large regular contiguous array, all coupling can be taken into account in the embedded element patterns. The array factor therefore suffices to describe the scanning of the array reducing significantly calibration complexity compared to, e.g. sparse, random or more irregular arrays. This is confirmed by the first array factor measurements, that were done using a novel technique that does not require calibration of the array. The first measurements on an astronomical source, the Sun, indicate that the system noise temperature lies between 104 and 118 K, which is reassuringly close to the design target of 100 K. © 2011 IEEE.

Agency: GTR | Branch: Innovate UK | Program: | Phase: Feasibility Study | Award Amount: 21.45K | Year: 2011

Abstracts are not currently available in GtR for all funded research. This is normally because the abstract was not required at the time of proposal submission, but may be because it included sensitive information such as personal details.

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