Recent developments for laser communication on CubeSats across interplanetary distances will be presented. A binary polarization-shift-keyed modulation scheme using dual gain-switched diode lasers is developed and demonstrated within an end-to-end link testbed to achieve signal acquisition under extremely poor signal-to-noise conditions (-43.5 dB average signal-to-noise power ratio at a 1-MHz symbol rate) to simulate direct-to-Earth links, while simultaneously targeting a limited SWaP footprint (1.5U envelope). Additional system design and constraints for the compact laser transmitter will be discussed.
Supercam is a 345 GHz, 64-pixel heterodyne imaging array for the Heinrich Hertz Submillimeter Telescope
(HHSMT). By integrating SIS mixer devices with Low Noise Ampliers (LNAs) in 8 - 1x8 pixel modules, the
size needed for the cryostat and the complexity of internal wiring is signicantly reduced. All subsystems
including the optics, cryostat, bias system, IF boxes, and spectrometer have been integrated for all 64 pixels. In
the spring of 2012, SuperCam was installed on the HHSMT for an engineering run where it underwent system
level tests and performed rst light observations. In the fall of 2012 SuperCam will begin a 500 square degree
survey of the Galactic Plane in 12CO J=3-2. This large-scale survey will help answer fundamental questions
about the formation, physical conditions, and energetics of molecular clouds within the Milky Way. The data
set will be available via the web to all interested researchers.
Although the PSM is primarily an alignment instrument, it can also be used to determine the conjugates of parabolic and
elliptical off-axis mirrors. By positioning the PSM at the sagittal and tangential foci of the mirrors, the conjugate
distances of the mirror can be found using a laser range finder, for example. Knowing the sagittal and tangential radii of
curvature (Rs and Rt), the vertex radius (Rv) is easily calculated. This information is used to verify that the mirror has
been correctly manufactured and to aid in positioning the mirror in an optical system. Examples are shown of these steps.