Space & Astronomy

It’s fair to compare 21st century particle accelerator technology to “rocket science”. But the original rocket science is also still thriving at the forefront of humanities’ technological advances.

Space technology has many specialties and sub-domains, one of them, maybe lesser known, is ground station communication technology. Large radio antennae are connected in a network for tracking and guiding spacecraft.

Foto: Michael Lucan, License: CC-BY-SA 3.0

Similar technologies are being used in radio astronomy where equal shaped large parabolic radio telescopes, arranged in large array grids. Applications are millimeter and gamma-ray astronomy.

Since 2002, Cosylab has done software development on the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) Advanced Common Software, short ACS. The customer of the project was ESO, the European Southern Observatory. We built a control system framework for radio astronomy applications that is still quite useful today, e.g. for the Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA).
Photo: Iztok Bončina/ESO, License: CC-BY-SA 3.0

On 5 July 2016, Slovenia signed an Association Agreement with ESA, the European Space Agency. Dedicated access to agency facilities and services will be provided to Slovenia’s national space projects. This can provide opportunities for the leading Slovenian technology companies, of which Cosylab is one, to engage in cooperations in space technologies.