Military Embedded Systems

Analog Devices and MDA beamforming IC to be used in Telesat LEO satellite constellation

News

April 07, 2021

Lisa Daigle

Assistant Managing Editor

Military Embedded Systems

Analog Devices and MDA beamforming IC to be used in Telesat LEO satellite constellation
Image courtesy Telesat

WILMINGTON, Mass. Analog Devices Inc. (ADI) will collaborate with satellite and geointelligence firm MDA (Brampton, Ontario) to deliver the beamforming integrated circuit (BFIC) to be used in MDA’s sophisticated phased-array antenna for the Telesat Lightspeed low earth orbit (LEO) satellite constellation.

LEO satellites move across the sky and must dynamically steer communication beams to maintain uninterrupted and high-speed connectivity to ground terminals; the ADI/MDA solution is designed to be highly reliable while operating under extremes of temperature and radiation for the full 10 to 12-year lifespan of each satellite.

“Electronically steered array technology is a necessity for the builders and operators of the next generation of LEO constellations. This technology provides MDA and Telesat with the ability to simultaneously steer multiple beams and allows beams to be rapidly repositioned at speeds that are not possible with mechanical systems,” said Bryan Goldstein, vice president of Aerospace and Defense at Analog Devices. “We are excited to collaborate with MDA to support the Telesat Lightspeed constellation.”

“The collaboration with ADI has enabled MDA to develop the critical solutions required to perform electronic beam steering on the Telesat Lightspeed antennas,” said Amer Khouri, vice president of Satellite Systems, MDA. “We look forward to continuing this journey together and producing the large quantity of antennas required for this groundbreaking program.”

Telesat Lightspeed, initially comprised of 298 next-generation satellites, has a planned launch during the second half of 2023. 

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