The research team of Tokyo Institute of Technology in Japan has developed a phased array that can be installed on a deployable membrane as a satellite technology, corresponding to the millimeter wave frequency band of the 5G network. In the phased array radio, the antenna element attached to the surface of the film changes the radiation direction of radio waves, thereby electrically compensating the flatness of the film after unfolding. In order to achieve this development, the film deployment technology on ultra-small satellites was developed by Associate Professor Sakamoto who specializes in the mechanical field and Professor Shirane Okada who specializes in the electrical and electronic fields. The assistant professor will develop beamforming technology for millimeter wave phased array radios.
If this technology is implemented, large antennas can be installed on small satellites, and communication speed, capacity and distance can be improved. In addition, it can be expected to use a satellite constellation using small satellites to realize the construction of an Internet network.
The research team will continue to develop new space demonstration equipment through an interdisciplinary approach, in which researchers in the mechanical field and researchers in the electrical field will cooperate in the same base.
If light weight, high storage rate, phased array radio equipment installed on satellites is realized, large antennas can be installed even on small satellites, and communication gain can be increased, that is, communication speed, capacity, and distance can be increased. become. In the future, it is expected to build an Internet network through a satellite constellation of small satellites orbiting the earth, real-time earth observation, and long-distance communications from small deep-space reconnaissance aircraft.
This technology will go through adjustments, various tests, safety inspections, etc., and develop in-vehicle products for launch in 2022.