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18 dBi X-Band APM


Summary

The Antenna Pointing Mechanism (APM) is a two-axis steerable mechanism with integral, high-gain X-band horn antenna, supporting high data rate downlinks on Earth observation and space science missions.

The APM has two independent axes of rotation. Each rotation axis comprises a hybrid stepper motor, spur gear transmission, and magnetic encoder. A spiral wrap DC harness passes the motor and telemetry channels through the azimuth axis to the elevation axis, while RF non-contact rotary joints are used to pass the RF feed through each axis.

The APM gained flight heritage on Surrey's NigeriaSat-2 mission (launched August 2011) and is now being operated nominally. Currently, eleven APMs are baseline on future Surrey missions, including a higher gain +18 dBi variant which will fly on TechDemoSat-1, launching 2014. A second batch of APMs is commencing manufacture in 2013, some for stock.


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Last updated: 2018-02-22