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dc.contributor.authorSielicki, Thomas
dc.date.accessioned2014-10-10T16:29:32Z
dc.date.available2014-10-10T16:29:32Z
dc.date.issued2013-12
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/11122/4452
dc.descriptionThesis (M.S.) University of Alaska Fairbanks, 2013
dc.description.abstractMany space missions, including low earth orbit CubeSats, communicate in a highly dynamic environment because of variations in geometry, weather, and interference. At the same time, most missions communicate using fixed channel codes, modulations, and symbol rates, resulting in a constant data rate that does not adapt to the dynamic conditions. When conditions are good, the fixed date rate can be far below the theoretical maximum, called the Shannon limit; when conditions are bad, the fixed data rate may not work at all. To move beyond these fixed communications and achieve higher total data volume from emerging high-tech instruments, this thesis investigates the use of error correcting codes and different modulations. Variable coded modulation (VCM) takes advantage of the dynamic link by transmitting more information when the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) is high. Likewise, VCM can throttle down the information rate when SNR is low without having to stop all communications. VCM outperforms fixed communications which can only operate at a fixed information rate as long as a certain signal threshold is met. This thesis presents a new VCM protocol and tests its performance in both software and hardware simulations. The protocol is geared towards CubeSat downlinks as complexity is focused in the receiver, while the transmission operations are kept simple. This thesis explores bin-packing as a way to optimize the selection of VCM modes based on expected SNR levels over time. Working end-to-end simulations were created using MATLAB and LabVIEW, while the hardware simulations were done with software defined radios. Results show that a CubeSat using VCM communications will deliver twice the data throughput of a fixed communications system.
dc.language.isoen_USen_US
dc.titleOvercoming CubeSat downlink limits with VITAMIN: a new variable coded modulation protocol
dc.typeThesis
dc.type.degreems
dc.identifier.departmentDepartment of Electrical and Computer Engineering
dc.contributor.chairThorsen, Denise
dc.contributor.committeeHamkin, Jon
dc.contributor.committeeHawkins, Joseph
dc.contributor.committeeMayer, Charles
refterms.dateFOA2020-03-20T01:12:15Z


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