[amsat-bb] Technical question about radar reflectivity

Graham Shirville g.shirville at btinternet.com
Tue Aug 7 04:50:48 PDT 2012

Hi All,

I am preparing a response to the UK Space Agency Consultation Document on the planned Reform of the UK Outer Space Act. Generally the proposals appear to support cubesat development here in the UK  and therefore should be supported.

Included in the Impact Assessment document that comes with the Consultation Document is a finding that “ Further, cubesat designers should be encouraged to incorporate appropriate reflectors on the outside of their platforms to enhance their radar cross-section/signatures and therefore their detectability from the ground in order to minimise the potential collision risk with other operational satellites.”

Would I be technically correct to be able to state something along the lines of...  “Many/most cubesat platforms have communication systems that use frequencies in the 435-438MHz amateur satellite service and use projecting 1/4 wave  monopole  or 1/2 wave dipole antennas. As these frequencies are adjacent to those used by many of the ground based radars used for tracking space objects, it can be demonstrated that this finding is being and will be satisfied”

I assume that their reflection will be enhanced by these antennas but want to make certain of the facts ..... so expert comments please.



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