Announcement of opportunity for the utilisation of Artemis payload by Commonthread

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             Announcement of opportunity

                         for the utilisation of

                  Artemis payload capacity

    Companies and Organisations are invited to apply for the
permission to use the capacity of the Artemis L-band Land Mobile
Payload and of the Data Relay Payload of ESA's Artemis satellite.
The payload capacity will be available to users as of 1.6.2001. The
          Artemis launch is planned for February 2001.

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 The ESA communication satellite Artemis will be launched in February 2001 and
                    will be operational as of June 2001.

      Artemis includes the capability to provide advanced communications via

                             an L-band Land Mobile payload

      and a Data Relay payload that can be operated at S-band or at Ka-band.

                         The available capacity is in the order of

          50% of the combined S-band and Ka-band data relay service time

 600 channels of an EIRP of 19 dbW /channel of the L-band Land Mobile Payload.

   Artemis is to be considered a unique European asset that ESA intends to make
  available to institutional and commercial users in order to promote and support
                            primarily European initiatives.

  Interested companies, operators and national or international organisations are
     invited to consider the use of the available capacity for experimental and
      commercial applications and to respond to the present announcement of
                    opportunity as outlined in section 5, 6 and 7.

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1. The Artemis satellite.

Artemis is a communication satellite of the European Space Agency (ESA). It has been
built to allow the European industry to develop, built and launch communication
payloads of advanced technologies and to promote new communication services in

The Artemis satellite carries the following communication payloads:

•   A data relay payload operating at optical wavelength (800 to 850 nanometer). This
    system is known under the name "SILEX".
•   A data relay payload operating at S-band (2 GHz) allowing a duplex link between
    Artemis and user spacecraft in LEO orbits at low to medium data rates (up to 1 Mbps
    on the forward link and up to 3 Mbps on the return link)
•   A data relay payload operating at Ka-band (23/26 GHz) allowing a duplex link
    between Artemis and user spacecraft in LEO orbits for medium to high data rates. (up
    to 10 Mbps in the forward link and up to 3 X 150 Mbps in the return link)

•   A Mobile Communication payload operated at L-band providing a coverage over the
    whole of Europe, the Mediteranian sea and North Africa

•   A Navigation payload to support the EGNOS system (European Global Navigation
    Overlay System).

The above payloads are capable to operate simultaneously. More details about the
capacity of the various payloads will be given in the following paragraphs.

2. Satellite status and programme planning.

The Artemis satellite is fully assembled and tested. It is actually stored in the clean room
of the ESTEC test center in Noordwijk / Netherlands, awaiting the transport to the launch
Artemis will be launched in February 2001 by means of the first Japanese H2A launcher
from Tanegashima, a small island in the south of Japan.
After launch the satellite will undergo during 4 months a commissioning programme
during which the health status of the satellite will be confirmed, the adequacy of the
established procedures for satellite operation will be demonstrated and the
communication payload performances will be measured.
Four months after launch, i.e. nominally by end of May 2001, Artemis will be declared
operational and will be available to provide services to users.
During the entire Artemis in-orbit life time ESA will be responsible for the operation of
the satellite. To this end ESA has placed a contract with a commercial entity who, on

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behalf of ESA, will operate Artemis. The management of the Data Relay Mission
however is under the direct control by ESA. This task will be performed by the ESA
Data Relay Mission Control Facility located in the ESA establishment in Redu / Belgium.

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3. The Artemis Data Relay System operating at S-band and at Ka-band

The data relay system provides a direct data link between Artemis and a user spacecraft
in earth orbit up to 1000 km altitude. For low to medium data rates, i.e. up to 1 Mbps in
the forward link and up to 3 Mbps in the return link the use of a S-band inter-orbit link is
recommended, for higher data rates the inter-orbit link shall be established at Ka-band
The following table provides the maximum data rates that can be provided at S-band and
at Ka-band respectively.

                                S-band                                        Ka-band
                     Forward link      Return link                 Forward link     Return link
 Max. data rate           1                3                           10             3 x 150
                                    Data relay system capacity

In addition to satellite programmes that have firm plans to use the Artemis data
relay system, about 50% of the service time is still available to interested users. The
full service time may be distributed between S-band and Ka-band as desired by the

The intersatellite link at optical wavelength will be used by Spot 4 and by the Japanese
satellite OICETS, however this will not impact the availble capacity since the optical
links and the RF links can be established simultaneously.

The following picture shows the overall data relay system configuration:

                                             ARTEMIS (GEO)
                                                                                           User 1 (LEO)

                                                        S-band or Ka-Band
                                                        inter-satellite link
                         Feeder link

                                                                                            User 2 (LEO)

                             ARTEMIS terminal and
    User earth                                                    Artemis Control Center
                             Mission Control Facility
    terminal                         in Redu                            in Fucino

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It is worth mentioning that during the operational phase any user of the data relay system
will always interface with the ESA Mission Control Facility only. The user will not have
contacts with the Artemis control center in Fucino.

3.1 Services to be provided by ESA.
In the preparatory phase ESA and the user will jointly agree the Interface Control
Document (ICD), that will define in detail all hardware and software interfaces and also
all operational procedures and timelines required for the provision of the data relay
service. ESA has available in Redu test stations that allow to simulate user terminals. By
means of these stations simulated data relay links can be established to demonstrate
realistically the performances of the final links.

The user can select to use its own feederlink station or to use ESA's feeder link
station in Redu. In the former case the user has its own feeder link station and ESA
will solely be responsible for allocating the time slot for the service period and for
configuring the satellite in line with the service requirement and, if applicable, for
transmitting the specific tracking beacon. In the case the user has not its own feeder
link station the user may also ask ESA to uplink the forward link signal to the user
spacecraft and to receive the return link signal from the user spacecraft, to
demodulate the data, to store them on agreed data carriers or to deliver them in real
time to a location to be selected by the user. For the real time data delivery the ESA
station in Redu can be connected to an optical fiber network with the capability to
transmit the highest data rate directly to the user.

Normally the forward and return interorbit link will use both the same frequency bands,
i.e S-band or Ka-band. However the user can also select to have the forward link at S-
band and the return link at Ka-band, provided the S-band and the Ka-band user are co-

Ka-band return links may be provided for up to three different users simultaneously
provided their terminals are colocated, e.g. all on the International Space Station.

3.2 Establishment of a S-band inter-orbit data relay link
Some weeks prior to the date at which the user wants to establish a link between his
satellite and Artemis he shall define in all details the service requirements. The Mission
Control Facility (MCF) in Redu will check the availability of the payload and , if positiv,
will confirm the service. The day before the service is to be provided the user shall
provide the MCF with the exact orbit data of his satellite at an agreed format and he will
receive the Artemis orbit data. At the time when the link will be established Artemis will
point the inter-orbit antenna into the direction of the user spacecraft and the user
spacecraft will point his antenna in the direction of Artemis.Both antennas will continue
to point in the direction of the partner in open loop until the end of the service periode.

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Adequate arrangements will have been set up to ensure frequency acquisition and
possibly Doppler compensation to optimise the link performances.

3.3 Establishment of a Ka-band inter-orbit data relay link.
The procedure for setting up the Ka-band link is similar to the S-band link, however at
high data rates the antenna tracking will be in closed loop. Artemis will allways use the
user return link signal for tracking purposes. The user has two options availble: he can
use the Artemis beacon that is transmitted permantly ( 23.540 or 23.545 GHz, global
coverage, EIRP >24 dbW, LHCP) or he can request a special signal that is transmitted by
the Artemis forward link via the inter-orbit antenna in the direction of the user. In the
latter case the simultaneous transmission of a S-band forward link is not possible.

3.4 RF characteristics of the data relay payload.
3.4.1 Feederlink characteristics
The feederlink stations located anywhere in Europe, owned by ESA or by the user will
communicate with Artemis at Ka-band. The main characteristics of the feeder link are the
• uplink frequencies:                 28.5 to 30.0 GHz (divided into 12 channels)
• downlink frequencies:               18.1 to 20.2 GHz (divided into 4 channels)
• G/T and EIRP in the direction of various locations in Europe:

          Location                    G/T    db/K                    EIRP dbW
                                                              For S-band     For Ka-band
                                                                 IOL             IOL
           Madrid                         -4.4                   41.2            41.7
          Liverpool                       -2.9                   42.2            42.7
            Oslo                          -1.4                   43.0            43.5
           Malmoe                         -3.6                   42.0            42.5
           Vienna                         -3.0                   42.0            42.5
            Rome                          -2.3                   42.3            42.8
           Fucino                         -4.8                   41.0            41.5
          Toulouse                        -1.8                   44.1            44.6
            Redu                          -1.8                   44.2            44.7
           Munich                         -2.1                   43.9            44.4

•    Channel bandwidth

                                      S-band IOL                   Ka-band IOL
       Forward link                     18 MHz                       46 MHz
        Return link                     18 MHz               Narrow channel 60 MHz
                                                             Wide channel 234 MHz

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3.4.2 S-band interorbit link RF characteristics
• Forward link frequencies      2.025 to 2.110 GHz
• Return link frequencies       2.200 to 2.290 GHz
• G/T in direction of user       6.5 db/K for 0 degr. Steering angle
                                 8.0 db/K for 10 degr. Steering angle
• EIRP in the direction of user > 46 dbW

3.4.3 Ka-band inter-orbit link RF characteristics.
• Forward link frequencies     23.120 to 23.550 GHz (divided into 5 channels)
• Return link frequencies       25.250 to 27.500 GHz (divided into 8 channels)
• G/T in direction of user      >22.5 db/K
• EIRP in direction of user     >62.9 dbW

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4. The Artemis L-band Land Mobile payload (LLM)
The Artemis LLM payload provides RF links between fixed user stations located
anywhere in Europe and North Africa and mobile user stations anywhere in the same
coverage area.

The following picture shows the overall LLM system configuration:

                                                                Artemis in
                                                                GEO orbit

                                                                              User link
    users                            Ku-band
                                     Feeder link
                                                                         Mobile users anywhere within

                              LLM payload system configuration
The fixed or mobile users may be located anywhere in Europe or North Africa as shown on the next

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In addition to the eurobeam illuminating the zone shown on the previous figure there are
three spotbeams covering together the same Euro/African zone. The contours of the three
Spot beams are shown in the annex to this paper.

Payload capacity:
The LLM payload capacity is expressed in terms of number of channels of 10KHz each
having an EIRP of at least 19 dbW anywhere in the coverage and providing a carrier /
intermodulation ratio (C/I) of better than 16 db. The capacity depends over which beam
the carriers are transmitted towards the mobile user. The following table gives the total
capacity assuming that all channels are transmitted via only one antenna beam

                             Capacity of the LLM payload

Beam                           Euro global      Spot A           Spot B      Spot C

Number of L-band                    360              662             462          522
carriers (19 dbW)
Capacity corresponds to             3.1              1.8             1.5           1.5
antenna contour ...db
below peak gain

The above number of channels is almost completely (95%) available to potential

Frequency ranges:
• Forward feederlink :          14.231    to    14.250    GHz
• Return feeder link :          12.731     to   12.750    GHz
• Forward user link   :         1.530     to    1.559     GHz
• Return user link    :         1631.5    to     1660.5    GHz

Channel selection:
In the forward link there are in total 3 channels of 1 MHz bandwidth plus 3 channels of 4
MHz bandwidth. In the return link there arein total 15 channels of 1 MHz bandwidth.
The center frequency of every channel can be freely and independantly selected
anywhere in the L-band frequency range in steps of 500 KHz. Forward and return
channels have a fixed frequency off-set of 101,5 MHz. The channels can be connected to
either of the four L-band beams, i.e. to the global Euro/North-African beam or to one of
the three spot beams. The channel distribution can be selected by the operator.

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L-band G/T
The G/T in the direction of a user anywhere in the antenna beam is equal or better than
the following values:
• - 0.7 db/K anywhere in the european/ african coverage
• + 1.0 db/K anywhere in the spot beam A
• +1.4 db/K anywhere in the spot beam B
• - 0.3 db/K anywhere in the spot beam C

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5. Response to the present Anouncement of Opportunity

In order to fairly assess all responses, potential candidate users are kindly requested to
provide with their reply the following information:

•   Description of area of interest, in particular the size and timing of allocation required.

•   Nature of business envisaged.

•   Desired conditions of allocation.
    Please identify specific pre-requisites for the lease, eg exclusivity of access, duration,
    use of ground facilities, communication requirements, etc.

    For the LLM capacity, the Agency is aiming for an exclusive arrangement at the
    earliest possible stage.

•   Financial considerations
    The Agency expects a commercial proposal based on market prices and at a level of
    detail and commitment which allows the Agency to judge on the overall financial
    benefit of the response..

•   Contact persons.

6. Assessment of Replies and Next Steps

The responses will be assessed against the following main-criteria:

•   Optimised usage of capacity
•   Realism of mission assumptions
•   Financial attractiveness

The Agency will enter into detailed negotiations with the company(ies) and organisations
which most closely meet the above criteria.

The response should reach the Agency’s representative (see next paragraph) not later than
29 September 2000.

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The envisaged overall schedule is as follows:

Announcement of Opportunity:                31 July 2000
Response                                    29 September 2000
Assessment by ESA                           until 1.November 2000
Contract negotiation:                       until end 2000

7. Further Information and Response

Any questions should be addressed to the Artemis Programme Manager:

G Oppenhaeuser

Tel: +31.71.565 3168
Fax: +31.71.565 4093

The response to the present Announcement of Opportunity shall be submitted in 3 copies
to the following address:

Postbus 299
2200 AG Noordwijk
The Netherlands
for the attention of Mr G Oppenhaeuser (APP-TA)

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                             Annex to doc. TA/GO/1941

             Annoncement of opportunity for utilisation of

                             Artemis payload capacity.

1. Contour of the Euro/North African beam of the LLM payload

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2. Contour of the Spot beam A of the LLM payload

3. Contour of the Spot beam B of the LLM payload

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4. Contour of the Spot beam C of the LLM payload

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