Luxembourg becoming member of the European Space Agency (ESA) in 2005 generated an important industrial dynamic for space technologies in the country wherein EmTroniX contributed as a subcontractor for 'prime' companies like LuxSpace (OHB), SES Astra and Thales Alenia Space, but with the ambition to build-up enough experience to handle 'prime' contractor roles in a near future.

PATHFINDER 2 (OHB / Luxspace)​

EmTroniX space adventure started as a key role-player in the development of the AIS (Automatic Identification System) demonstrator satellite PATHFINDER 2 which had as primary function of gathering spaceborne AIS data from vessels, objective being to overcome signal collisions.  EmTroniX was assigned the task of designing and producing the satellite's electronics (payload AIS receiver, downlink modulator, solar panel power tracker, battery management, ...) and the full embedded control software. 

Launched in September 2009 by the the Indian rocket PSLV-C14, the concept proved itself utterly successful in space with performances far beyond initial expectations (AIS messages reception level, satellite's lifetime exceeded by 5...).  

Space projects

Image courtesy of Luxspace

Space projects
COLAIS (ESA Project)

The story continued with the active participation of EmTroniX to the ESA GSTP COLAIS (LUXAIS) project, which represented the continuity of the successful PF2 demonstrator with enhanced signal analysis and logging capabilities, but with also additional stringent technical requirements as for all ISS-embarked equipment. 

EmTroniX contribution to the project was to develop and produce all the electronics (dual channel AIS receiver front-end, ERNOBox interface, FPGA board...), the mechanics (compliant enclosure and connectors), the integrated FPGA IPs (dual-CPU architecture, AIS fast signal sampling and processing,...) and embedded software (AIS message reception handling, ERNOBox com. control, ...) .


The instrument was brought to the ISS (International Space Station) by the Japanese HTV-1 and operated in Europe's Colombus module in 2010.   

VESSEL SAT 1 & 2 (Orbcomm)

​The transition from experimental to commercial technologies came with participation of EmTroniX to the first Luxembourg built satellite VESSEL SAT 1, and later VESSEL SAT 2 operated by ORBCOMM.  For this project, EmTroniX developed the 4-channel payload AIS receiver, the telecommand receiver and the OBC (On-Board Computer) bus interface (magnetorquer controller, accelerometer, gyroscopes, analog telemetry,...) electronic boards.​

VESSEL SAT 1 was launched in October 2011 by the the Indian rocket PSLV-C14 PSLV into a near-equatorial orbit. ​​

Space projects

Image courtesy of Luxspace

Space projects
Space-based ADS-B

​Having acquired significant experience in spaceborne AIS receivers designs,  EmTroniX is currently collaborating with Thales Alenia Space Germany to develop a Space-Based ADS-B demonstration satellite under an ESA contract.   ​As with AIS, ADS-B messages reception in space has to overcome high numbers of signal collisions over dense air-spaces.

Based on a Software-Defined Radio concept, the all-numerical optimized high-sensitivity non-coherent multi-channel reception, demodulation and processing chain integrated into an FPGA will be entirely designed and tested by EmTroniX.  Software interfaces between the integrated Power-PC and the FPGA will also be provided.  ​​


​This was the first commercial demonstration satellite orbiting the Moon, and was launched in 2014 in memory of Prof. Dott.-Ing. h.c. Manfred Fuchs, the founder of OHB.

EmTroniX  participated in the project by providing the electronics of the OBC interface, the I/Q modulator and the battery management.   ​​

Space projects

Image courtesy of Luxspace

PROXIMITY 1 SDR Autonomous Receiver (ESA/QinetiQ)

Autonomous telecommunication HUB having to automatically detect signal modulation, frequency and baud-rate for a Mars-Orbiter.  EmTroniX designed the receiver's algorithm and transposed it into VHDL for FPGA implementation.  It also provided the receiver's prototype and the system test bench  ​​

Space projects

Triton-X (OHB-LuxSpace)

Triton-X, is the next generation multi-mission microsatellite designed to enable affordable regional and global LEO constellations. 

EmTroniX will be focused on the High Speed COMM for the data downlink of the Avionics Unit for the Triton-X platform. 

Space projects Triton X

Image courtesy of Luxspace