In the summer of 2017 a group of students at the Eindhoven University of Technology decided to put a theory developed by the Radboud University into practice. At the time, Radboud Radio Lab (RRL) was working on a satellite payload destined to be part of the Chang’e 4 mission. Its objective is to perform radio-interferometry from the far side of the moon (L2) and gather data for research into the history of the universe.
RRL realized however, that a similar technique can also be used to track objects that emit a radio signal, e.g. beacons. Simulations show that for static objects sub-centimeter accuracy can be achieved. The primary objective of PR3 is to adapt, and test, radio-interferometry to track (fast) moving objects, such as REXUS with a very high accuracy.
As the REXUS payload only required three transmitter modules to be on board the experiment was extended to also perform radiation measurement with commercial-of-the-shelf camera sensors. Combined with high-accuracy position and orientation tracking provided by the radio-interferometry experiment an accurate measurement of radiation versus altitude-and-orientation can be made.