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Space Communications and Navigation

Laser-Enhanced Mission Navigation and Operational Services (LEMNOS) Optical-to-Orion (O2O) Space Terminal (LEMNOS O2O)

Active Technology Project

Project Introduction

NASA has invested in advancing free space optical communications technologies to meet the ever-greater data demands for science and human exploration missions, to cultivate a robust commercial optical communications industrial base, and to enable optical communications technology diffusion for widespread commercial applications – notably, the geosynchronous optical communication relay, Laser Communications Relay Demonstration (LCRD) and the low-Earth orbit Integrated Lasercomm LEO User Modem Amplifier – Terminal (ILLUMA-T) for LEO mission users. A variant of the ILLUMA-T, using a commercially-available pulse-position modulation (PPM) modem, will be used to support the Orion Artemis 2 mission to the Moon. The Laser-Enhanced Mission Navigation and Operational Services (LEMNOS) Optical-to-Orion (O2O) optical communications space terminal will downlink up to 256 Mbps from the Moon while uplinking 20 Mbps, data rates that can support multiple streams of ultra-high definition (UHD) video in real-time.

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Primary U.S. Work Locations and Key Partners

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Project Management

Project Duration

Technology Maturity (TRL)

Technology Areas

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