Automated satellite detection algorithms for activity validation

As satellite activities increasingly populate satellite bands, it is of interest to develop a Space Traffic Management method with an automatic activity validation of expected satellite passes. Different capabilities can be used to monitor space activities from the grounds such as optical, radio frequency and radar.


Using the antennas at disposal at EPFL, covering different frequency band, the student will have to:

  • Develop a detection algorithm for satellite activity validation
  • Assess interference mitigation methods (on hardware and/or software)
  • Implement a Software Defined Radio (SDR) program for satellite activity characterization
  • Automatize the process to track multiple spacecraft in sequence

Required skills

For the good realization of the project, it is recommended that the student have:
• General understanding of the orbital dynamics and Image processing, mechanical design is a plus
• Programming skills in Java or python
• Ability to appraise and adapt the project to fulfill the needs of the Space Domain operation team
• A sense of responsibility to provide the work quality to be used for everyday applications

Place of work

The student will have the opportunity to work in a stimulating environment with other students in different locations (Lausanne, Bern, Zurich) in Switzerland depending on the needs of the projects.


The student is expected to deliver at the end of the project the following elements:

  • The source code related to the first algorithm to automatically track and detect the satellite operations and generate reporting in the form of an activity report and / or dynamic database
  • The hardware schematic and configuration parameters
  • Complete documentation of the development and methodology, including a description of the environment, the installation procedure, and the configuration
  • The results of the analyses with limitations and recommendations for further work