Telemetry Stations I and II

The German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) Mobile Rocket Base in Oberpfaffenhofen operates an autonomous mobile telemetry station for telemetry reception, tracking and command of sounding rockets, balloons and satellites in the S-band frequency range. It consists of a control station and a five-metre parabolic mirror as a main antenna, plus a 1.5-metre parabolic mirror as a secondary antenna. The secondary antenna can be operated separately or in conjunction with the main antenna.

The control station contains the necessary equipment to receive, record and process a number of telemetry and TV signals with different types of modulation simultaneously.

Both the control station and the main antenna are built according to ISO shipping container standards and the secondary antenna can be packed in a compact transport box. This makes transporting the entire telemetry station very easy and cost-effective. The station can be operated even under extreme climatic conditions, and requires only minimal on-site infrastructure, making it suitable for use worldwide.

The station’s auto-tracking properties are designed to meet the stringent requirements of sounding rockets. The proximity to the launch site necessitates that the stations are highly dynamic and that their tracking is reliable. This is achieved through the acquisition-aid feed, the high rotational velocities and accelerations of the rotating stand, and the specially adapted ACU and feed.

This large-scale facility is currently located at the Esrange Space Center in Kiruna, Sweden, as the majority of the missions carried out there involve the station.


Volker Speelmann

Head of Research Infrastructures
German Aerospace Center (DLR)
Executive Board department for Innovation, Transfer and Research Infrastructure
Linder Höhe, 51147 Cologne

Rainer Kirchhartz

German Aerospace Center (DLR)
Space Operations and Astronaut Training
Mo­bile Rock­et Base (RB-MRB)
Münchener Straße 20, 82234 Oberpfaffenhofen-Wessling