The AISat is the first German national satellite, enabling observations of worldwide ship movements by means of the Automatic Identification Signal (AIS). The use of AIS is mandatory in maritime traffic. With it the latest methods and practices for the following are developed and supported:
Next to the class-A and class-B signals of commercial and non-commercial ships, the use of a high-gain helix antenna permits the receiving of signals from the sea emergency beacons (AIS-SART).
The ground station is used for operation and control of the smallest satellites (nano-sat) and is constantly being expanded. Currently, the earth station is optimized for the satellite AISat (CLAVIS-1). The satellite has the call signal DP0AIS and it is expected to receive AIS-ship signals from space by 2011. Buffered AIS-data helped to reconstruct a ship collision on the river Weser.
Project L.A.R.S. (Large Arctic Radio Station for small satellites)
The goal of this project is to set up an ground segment at the DLR-site Inuvik (Canada) that enables the operation of the smallest satellites with VHF-, UHF- and S-Band. The excellent location of the station permits the recording of several satellite flyovers and the retrieval of the scientific data. The entire ground segment was designed by the department of Orbital Systems and Safety. The facility’s tele-maintenance and optimized antenna, including the most modern receiver and transponder technology, are a basic element of this system. Received data shall be collected and provided for analysis by means of the most modern SDR-technology.