The Ka-Band, a very small, lightweight amplifier for radio signals at a frequency about 4 times higher than the current standard frequency used for deep-space missions, was validated on the Deep Space 1 mission. This frequency band is like another channel in the radio spectrum and offers the possibility of sending more information with less power, important for future small but capable spacecraft. The generation and transmission of these signals worked as hoped on the spacecraft, and the reception and processing of the signals at the Deep Space Network was similarly successful.

Ka-band signals will allow future spacecraft to send more data in less time. NASA’s Deep Space Network continues to use these signals to prepare for a future in which spacecraft routinely use this high frequency radio channel.

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