Biarri GPS Receiver Project

Project Biarri is 5-Eyes Cubesat mission that Australia's DST Group has been working on in collaboration with New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdon and the United States. The mission will explore cubesat formation flying and aims to better understand the drag and lift forces experienced by the CubeSats, as well as undertaking research into space situational awareness (SSA). The performance of the ACSER developed Namuru V32R3A GPS receiver will be validated in orbit using the Electro Optic Systems (EOS) SSA infrastructure.

With delivery of four flight model Namuru GPS receivers to the Defence Science and Technology (DST) Group in late 2013 and assembly, integration and testing having been performed at the US Air Force Research Laboratories (AFRL) in 2014 and early 2015, it was fully expected that the Biarri mission spacecraft would have been deployed in late 2015 or early 2016. However, as is often the case with such projects, the launch was delayed. The latest advice from DST Group is that the Biarri mission is to be split into two separate missions; namely a risk mitigation mission called Biarri Point in which a single spacecraft will be deployed in 2017, followed by deployment of the remaining three CubeSats as a single constellation in a mission called Biarri Squad at a later date.

In the meantime, UNSW has signed a contract with DST Group to provide on-going support for the Namuru V32R3 GPS receivers. This support will be vital once Biarri Point has been deployed and it becomes necessary to analyze the performance of the receiver and undertake the various experiments designed for the mission. 

In Summary:

The Project

  • Biarri is a collaborative cubesat program, led by BAE Systems.
  • The Australian Centre for Space Engineering Research will deliver space-qualified GPS L1-only receivers ultimately for use by the Defence Science and Technology Organisation's (DSTO) Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Division (ISRD). The GPS receivers will be flown on a Colony-2 cubists.
  • Australia is participating in Biarri with four international partners.

The Biarri Project will:

  • Develop, manufacture and functionally test four Namuru V3.2 space qualified GPS receiver cards.
  • Deliver interface documentation for the interface of the Namuru GPS receiver.
  • Develop ground based software to take the output of three Namuru GPS receivers installed in formation flying satellites and improve the accuracy of the reported position.
  • Assist with the integration of the GPS receiver cards into the satellite.
  • Deliver software to exercise the Namuru GPS receiver for use during space qualification testing and integration.

Namuru GPS Receiver Board