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SCIENTIA SINICA Informationis, Volume 50, Issue 1: 87-127(2020) https://doi.org/10.1360/SSI-2019-0242

Status and prospect of China's deep space TT&C network

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  • ReceivedOct 31, 2019
  • AcceptedDec 14, 2019
  • PublishedJan 13, 2020

Abstract

As a core support system, China's deep space TT&C (tracking telemetry and command) network plays an irreplaceable role in deep space exploration. Driven by China's Lunar Exploration Project, the deep space TT&C network, with complete functions, advanced performance, and global layout, has been built in stages. Additionally, driven by the future lunar and planetary exploration projects, China's deep space TT&C network will realize stronger deep space tracking and telecommunications capabilities through the application of new technologies such as antenna arraying, optical communication, and phase reference interferometry. It will also be useful for deep space scientific exploration activities.


Funded by

国家中长期科技发展规划重大专项(探月工程)


Acknowledgment

中国科学院上海天文台黄勇研究员、北京跟踪与通信技术研究所徐得珍助理研究员, 对本文撰写提供了有益的帮助.


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  • Figure 1

    Configuration of deep space TT&C system

  • Figure 2

    Coverage of spacecraft at different orbital altitudes by NASA's deep space network

  • Figure 3

    Layout of global major deep space TT&C facilities

  • Figure 4

    NASA deep space network layout and composition

  • Figure 5

    Layout of ESA deep space TT&C network

  • Figure 6

    Coverage of China deep space TT&C network at 10$^{\circ}$ elevation

  • Figure 7

    Coverage of China deep space TT&C network at 5$^{\circ}$ elevation

  • Figure 8

    Jiamusi deep space station 66 m TT&C equipment and site surrounding terrain

  • Figure 9

    Kashi deep space station 35 m TT&C equipment and site surrounding terrain

  • Figure 10

    Argentina deep space station 35 m TT&C equipment and site surrounding terrain

  • Figure 11

    Beam waveguide structure of 35 m deep space TT&C antenna (left) and dichroic mirror (right)

  • Figure 12

    Jiamusi 66 m deep space TT&C equipment S-band (left) 10 kW transmitter and X-band (right) 10 kW transmitter

  • Figure 13

    X band refrigeration receiver and low temperature amplifier of deep space TT&C equipment

  • Figure 14

    Active hydrogen clock and frequency purifier of deep space TT&C equipment

  • Figure 15

    The Chang'E-4 lander on the far side of the moon, the Yutu-2 lunar rover and the Queqiao relay satellite

  • Figure 16

    Schematic diagram of 4$\times$35 m antenna array of China kashi deep space station

  • Figure 17

    Schematic diagram of China's domestic wide area antenna array

  • Figure 18

    Distribution of potential deep space optical communications optional ground sites

  • Figure 19

    Schematic diagram of 35 m deep space RF/optical hybrid system

  • Figure 20

    Interferometry baseline combination under the condition of International cooperation of China deep space TT&C network

  • Figure 21

    Spatial frequency UV plane coverage for the Chinese VLBI Network with ESA for declination 30$^\circ$

  • Figure 22

    China cislunar space VLBI concept

  • Table 1   Frequency band for deep space TT&C
    Frequency band Uplink (MHz) Downlink (MHz)
    S-band 2025$\sim$2120 2200$\sim$2300
    X-band 7145$\sim$7235 8400$\sim$8500
    Ka-band 34200$\sim$34700 31800$\sim$32300
  • Table 2   The output signal of time-frequency subsystem of deep space TT&C equipment
    Number Signal types Number of signal
    1 10 MHz sine wave 16
    2 100 MHz sine wave 16
    3 1 pps 12
    4 10 pps 5
    5 100 pps 5
    6 1 kpps 5
    7 IRIG-B (TTL) output 16
    8 Monitoring of time and frequency 1
  • Table 3   Performance comparison of international typical large-diameter TT&C equipment (64 m/66 m)
    Russia 64 m Japan 64 m Italy 64 m China 66 m
    S-band EIRP (dBW) 104 97.3
    S-band G/T (dB/K) 44 (15$^\circ$ EL) 41 (15$^\circ$ EL) 41.8 (10$^\circ$ EL)
    X-band EIRP (dBW) 107.8 113 108 108.3
    X-band G/T (dB/K) 51.7 (5$^\circ$ EL) 55.1 (15$^\circ$ EL) 54.5 (10$^\circ$ EL) 53.3 (10$^\circ$ EL)
  • Table 4   Performance comparison of international typical large-diameter TT&C equipment (34 m/35 m)
    ESA 35 m NASA 35 m China 35 m
    S-band EIRP (dBW) 97 98.1 93
    S-band G/T (dB/K) 37.5 (10$^\circ$ EL) 39.4 (10$^\circ$ EL) 37 (10$^\circ$ EL)
    X-band EIRP (dBW) 107 109.4 104
    X-band G/T (dB/K) 50.1 (10$^\circ$ EL) 50.0 (10$^\circ$ EL) 50.0 (10$^\circ$ EL)
    Ka-band EIRP (dBW) 101 (design value) 108.5 (DSS-25) (Scalable)
    Ka-band G/T (dB/K) 55.8 (10$^\circ$ EL) 60.8 (45$^\circ$ EL) 56 (10$^\circ$ EL)
  • Table 5   Antenna array and a single large antenna performance comparison
    NASA 70 m China 66 m ESA 35 m China 35 m China wide area antenna array
    X-band G/T (dB/K) 57 53.3 51 50 $\ge$ 61
    Ka-band G/T (dB/K) 55.8 56 $\ge$ 67.5
  • Table 6   Power comparison of deep space TT&C transmitter
    Nation or organization Frequency band Maximum transmitted power
    S 20/400 kW
    US X 20/80 kW
    Ka 800 W
    ESA S 20 kW
    X 20 kW
    China S 10 kW
    X 10/50 kW
  • Table 7   The measurement capability of the lunar VLBI with ground stations network
    Ground station Sensitivity (mJy) SNR$^{\rm~a)}$ Accuracy of delay (ps)
    Tianma 65 m 2.5 20 53
    FAST 0.8 63 17

    a) SNR: signal to noise ratio.

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