Northrop Grumman has incorporated a reflector system into NASA's recently launched soil moisture mapping satellite in order to help the spacecraft collect data upon deployment.
The AstroMesh-Lite reflector, developed by Northrop's Astro Aerospace company, is designed for high frequency communications and radar applications, Northrop Grumman said Tuesday.
“Ultra-lightweight technology is critical to meet the demanding requirements of this mission and it is an honor to have participated with the NASA/JPL team on such an important project,” said John Alvarez, general manager of Astro Aerospace.
The reflector is built with an antenna beam that scans a swath of 621 miles and a boom in the spacecraft is set to deploy the reflector into position 20 days after launch.
The satellite lifted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in Florida on Friday.