KaHYB - Ka-IF and IF-Ka Converter

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This activity involves development of frequency conversions from Ka-Band to intermediate frequencies at  L and C-Band. In the same way, frequency conversions in the opposite direction is covered. The specific output of this development is four converter hybrid types. In addition the activity involves the design and development of three custom specific MMIC’s.

Hybrid models covered:

  • STH-3075 L- to Ka-band upconverter hybrid
  • STH-3085 Ka- to L-band downconverter hybrid
  • STH-3090 C- to Ka-band upconverter hybrid
  • STH-3100 Ka- to C-band downconverter hybrid


  • SMC-0030 Medium power amplifier 13 – 21 GHz
  • SMC-0040 Medium power amplifier 20 – 31 GHz
  • SMC-0050 Low Noise amplifier 21 – 27.5 GHz9

The main challenge in the program is related to build technology for Ka-band applications. Hence the risk mitigation associated with the use of hybrid technology at Ka-band is a major driver for the program.

In addition, the development of the MMIC’s includes an inherent risk, as the transistor models are not sufficiently mature for accurate simulations in the design phase.


To have an extended converter module library is regarded as necessity to be able to respond adequately to new commercial opportunities. Adequately in this context means responses with acceptable lead times, low cost and low risk.

The hybrid technology used in the program is well suited to both supporting the needed miniaturization for Ka-band as well as the mounting accuracy needed for repeatability and predicted performance 


Based on the Kongsberg Space Electronics modular build and

implementation technology variants of these hybrids can be developed meeting also other specific band and bandwidth variants.

Through critical breadboard demonstration and characterization an important fundament is established for further implementation in new hardware.

System Architecture

The frequency converter hybrids can be used in many different architectures as frequency translation is mandatory for almost all kinds of satellite communication equipment. This could be frequency conversions at the input or output of digital processors in beamforming systems, or frequency conversion in ISL (Inter Satellite Link) systems.


The project flow is lined out below:

  1. System Study and Baseline Design:
    • Concluded with Baseline Design Review
  1. Hybrid Detailed Design /MMIC Design
    • Concluded with Preliminary Design Review
  1. Hybrid Development & Critical Breadboarding /MMIC Development
    • Concluded with Critical Design Review
  1. EM Hybrid Manufacturing & Test
    • Concluded with Test Review Board / Final Review
Current status

The work is completed.

  • Four different frequency converter hybrids have been developed and tested.
  • Three different MMICs have been developed and verified through test programs and implementation in the developed hybrids.