Thales Alenia Space to Develop Communication Devices for Two NASA Programs

Thales Alenia Space has secured a pair of contracts to supply Ka-band travelling wave tube amplifiers and S-band transponders for two projects managed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center.

The company said Monday it will provide the communication equipment to support the Wide Field InfraRed Survey Telescope and Plankton, Aerosol, Cloud, ocean Ecosystem missions.

PACE is scheduled to launch in 2022 or 2023 and designed to collect data for ocean biogeochemistry and ecosystem research efforts. The satellite will also work to monitor clouds and aerosol particles in the atmosphere.

The WFIRST observatory will aim to perform a census of approximately 2.6K exoplanets within the Milky Way and help scientistis find answers to questions related to exoplanet detection, infrared astrophysics and dark energy. The space-based telescope is targeted for a 2025 launch and designed to operate over 5-year mission.

Thales Alenia Space's team in Belgium will supply the agency with TWT amplifiers for data downlink functions while the company's business in Spain will develop, analyze, produce and test transponders for space vehicles to send telemetry data to ground control stations.

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