Callisto supplied the Cryogenic & Ambient LNAs at 26 GHZ GHz band for the ESA Snowbear project : a Svalbard ground station for wide-band earth observation data reception.
Due to congestion in the Earth Exploration Service (EES) at X-Band (8.0-8.4 GHz) and (7.75-7.9 GHz) used today by most Earth Observation satellites for payload data downlinks and the increase in required downlink data rates, ESA has embarked on the technology preparation for the exploitation of the 26 GHz band by future Earth Observation missions. The Agency will use this band operationally for the first time in a polar orbit mission for the EUMETSAT Metop-SG spacecrafts (first Launch in 2021), currently under development by ESA. The purpose of the SNOWBEAR project (Svalbard grouNd StatiOn for Wide Band Earth observation dAta Reception) is to de-risk the introduction of the new 26 GHz band taking advantage of the outcome of a number of activities already carried out by the ESA Ground Station Engineering team (OPS-GS) as part of the 26 GHz Technology Roadmap and use them on a pre-operational scenario.
For this project, Callisto provided a 26GHz dual channel Cryogenic and Ambient LNAs. As a result, this allowed to obtain a G/T > 37.2 dB/K for the Cryogenic LNA and a G/T > 35.3 dB/K for the Ambient Temperature LNA (considering 5 degree elevation and 0.25 Cumulative Distribution).