The European Space Agency has filed a patent for a method of wireless communication between a hub station and multiple user terminals. The method involves transmitting radio signals to subsets of user terminals using active beams with beam centers determined by the locations of the terminals. The patent also includes a hub station for wireless communication and a method for determining antenna parameters and beam patterns. GlobalData’s report on European Space Agency gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on European Space Agency, beamforming networks was a key innovation area identified from patents. European Space Agency's grant share as of September 2023 was 69%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Method of wireless communication with hub station and user terminals

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: European Space Agency SA

A recently filed patent (Publication Number: US20230261710A1) describes a method for wireless communications between a hub station and multiple user terminals. The method involves transmitting radio signals to subsets of user terminals using sets of active beams. The active beams have beam centers that are determined based on the locations of the user terminals. For each radio resource block, a subset of user terminals is selected, and a beam center is determined for each user terminal in the subset. Radio signals are then transmitted to the selected subset of user terminals using the respective radio resource block and beams corresponding to the determined beam centers.

The patent also includes additional claims, such as switching between different sets of active beams for different radio resource blocks based on the selected subsets of user terminals. The beams are generated using beamforming with an active antenna array, and a mapping matrix is used to map signals intended for user terminals to signals for transmission by respective antenna elements. The mapping matrix includes complex coefficient entries based on the locations of the antenna elements and user terminals.

The patent further describes the use of fixed beams with beam centers arranged at the vertices of a regular lattice. The fixed beams have a normalized beam spacing between adjacent beams that is typically smaller than 0.6. The subset of active beams is selected based on the locations of the user terminals, and a beamforming matrix is used to map signals intended for the active beams to signals for transmission by respective antenna elements.

The patent also includes claims related to selecting the subset of user terminals based on mutual radio interferences, determining antenna parameters and beam patterns for the hub station, and the use of different types of radio resource blocks.

Overall, the patent describes a method and system for wireless communications between a hub station and multiple user terminals using active beams and beamforming techniques. The method allows for efficient transmission of radio signals based on the locations of the user terminals and includes various features to optimize the performance of the system.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.