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Detection of radio interference in the UHF amateur radio band with the Serpens satellite

Quintana-Diaz, Gara; Nodar-López, Diego; González Muíño, Alberto; Aguado Agelet, Fernando; Cappelletti, Chantal; Ekman, Torbjörn

Detection of radio interference in the UHF amateur radio band with the Serpens satellite Thumbnail


Authors

Gara Quintana-Diaz

Diego Nodar-López

Alberto González Muíño

Fernando Aguado Agelet

CHANTAL CAPPELLETTI Chantal.Cappelletti@nottingham.ac.uk
Assistant Professor in Aerospace Engineering

Torbjörn Ekman



Abstract

High packet losses when uplinking commands to small satellites have been reported in the UHF amateur band (430–440 MHz) since late 2013. Measurements of the uplink radio environment have shown high levels of in-band interference in previous works, but public measurement results are limited. Average interference levels are usually measured over some time to build heat maps. In this paper, the analysis is focused on sustained interference over a 24 ms time window using a maximum-minimum method. New heat maps and interference power distributions over Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the Americas were obtained using this method on measurements from the Serpens satellite. One of the missions of Serpens was to test an in orbit store-and-forward communication system to exchange short messages with ground sensors for disaster monitoring. The satellite operators had difficulties commanding the satellite due to interference, causing bit errors in uplink packets. Interference power of up to −70 dBm was detected during in-orbit measurements over Europe and North America, while expected received power from the ground stations was not more than −80 dBm. High power space-object tracking radars on the ground operating in the 420–450 MHz band could be the cause, but further measurements are required to verify this. Characterizing this interference can help develop mitigation techniques for future satellite communication systems.

Citation

Quintana-Diaz, G., Nodar-López, D., González Muíño, A., Aguado Agelet, F., Cappelletti, C., & Ekman, T. (2022). Detection of radio interference in the UHF amateur radio band with the Serpens satellite. Advances in Space Research, 69(2), 1159-1169. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.asr.2021.10.017

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 9, 2021
Online Publication Date Oct 20, 2021
Publication Date Jan 15, 2022
Deposit Date Dec 28, 2021
Publicly Available Date Jan 5, 2022
Journal Advances in Space Research
Print ISSN 0273-1177
Electronic ISSN 1879-1948
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 69
Issue 2
Pages 1159-1169
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.asr.2021.10.017
Keywords Space and Planetary Science; Aerospace Engineering; General Earth and Planetary Sciences; Atmospheric Science; Geophysics; Astronomy and Astrophysics
Public URL https://nottingham-repository.worktribe.com/output/7108530
Publisher URL https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0273117721007778?via%3Dihub
Additional Information This article is maintained by: Elsevier; Article Title: Detection of radio interference in the UHF amateur radio band with the Serpens satellite; Journal Title: Advances in Space Research; CrossRef DOI link to publisher maintained version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.asr.2021.10.017; Content Type: article; Copyright: © 2021 COSPAR. Published by Elsevier B.V.

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