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Announcements of Opportunity

SURF: Announcements of Opportunity

Below are Announcements of Opportunity posted by Caltech faculty and JPL technical staff for the SURF program.

Each AO indicates whether or not it is open to non-Caltech students. If an AO is NOT open to non-Caltech students, please DO NOT contact the mentor.

Announcements of Opportunity are posted as they are received. Please check back regularly for new AO submissions! Remember: This is just one way that you can go about identifying a suitable project and/or mentor. Click here for more tips on finding a mentor.

Announcements for external summer programs are listed here.

New for 2021: Students applying for JPL projects should complete a SURF@JPL application instead of a "regular" SURF application.

Students pursuing opportunities at JPL must be
U.S. citizens or U.S. permanent residents.

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Project:  Smart Carrier Acquisition and Tracking for Space Radios
Disciplines:  Other , Communications and Networking
Mentor:  Marc Sanchez Net, (JPL), marc.sanchez.net@jpl.nasa.gov, Phone: (818) 354-1650
Background:  JPL flight radios used to establish communications between two spacecraft (commonly known as proximity links) are fitted with specialized systems that enable the receiver to estimate the received carrier frequency even in the presence of large Doppler shifts. For the past several years, our group has developed a new type of smart carrier acquisition and tracking algorithms that allow spacecraft to rapidly and robustly estimate the received signal Doppler shift, compensate for it, and provide a stable frequency reference that the radio can use to recover the information bits embedded in the received signal.
Description:  Under this announcement of opportunity, students will have the opportunity to help develop and test the new smart carrier tracking and acquisition algorithm under a variety of scenarios representative of spaceflight operations. Specifically, students will first test the performance of the system at very low signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs) using high-fidelity simulations in Matlab. Then, students will consider enhacements to the signal processing chain that increase the range of SNRs over which the system can operate, and study the performance of the system under challenging operational scenarios such as Entry Descent and Landing and multipath channels.
Student Requirements:  Interest in communications and networking.
Background in linear systems and signal processing.
Backgroung in probability theory and stochastic processing
Solid coding skills in Python, Matlab and C++.
Experience with GNU Radio and SDRs preferred
Location / Safety:  Project building and/or room locations: . Student will need special safety training: .
Programs:  This AO can be done under the following programs:

  Program    Available To
       SURF    both Caltech and non-Caltech students 

Click on a program name for program info and application requirements.

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