November 28, 2004

Irish Craft in Space

AN IRISH firm has won a prestigious two-year research and development contract with the Euro-pean Space Agency.

Fibrepulse Limited will assess the feasibility of using fibre optic tech-nology on satellites.

Fibre optic technologies allow for the transmission of high data rates using light signals.

Current satellites use copper cables, but fibre optics would bring advant-ages including faster speed and lower weight.

Shane Scott, Technical Director of Fibrepulse, said: "The effects of rad-iation on the fibres have to be predicted. Current fibres will go dark from radiation in space."

Fibrepulse Limited, of Castlebar, Co Mayo, was founded in 1998 and is based in a custom-built headquarters in Castlebar Technology Park.