US. SDA & Kepler inter-satellite optical comms results imminent, as is test with Cailabs optical ground station

by Peter B. de Selding

LA PLATA, Maryland — At least three laser-optical satellite communications systems already in orbit — two testing inter-satellite links and one for satellite-to-ground communications — are expected to deliver early results in the coming weeks.

As is often the case when the subject is satellite optical links, the U.S. Space Development Agency (SDA) is at center stage here. Twenty-three SDA satellites launched in April and June 2023, each with two optical communications terminals (OCTs) built by Tesat Spacecom, were scheduled to undergo testing as early as . . .

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