Dubbed the Space-Based Adaptive Communications Node (Space-BACN) programme the aim is to create orbital nodes that can translate information between different satellite networks, and allow the various constellations to communicate with each other.
Intel was selected for Phase 1 of the programme and covers the design work for a reconfigurable optical modem. This is intended to be capable of support for current and new communication standards and protocols to deliver the required level of interoperability among satellite constellations.
The optical modem design will comprise three chiplets based on Intel's Agilex FPGA technology, the chipmaker said. These will be integrated using the embedded multi-die interconnect bridge (EMIB) and advanced interface bus (AIB) packaging technologies into a single multi-chip package (MCP), similar to the way Intel intends to deliver its Meteor Lake PC chips.
Intel has started Phase 1, which will see it design each of the chiplets and work with the other parties to define the interfaces between each of the other technical areas. This phase is expected to last 14 months followed by a preliminary design review.