Is there life out there? On its quest to Jupiter and its’ moons Ganymede, Callisto and Europa, the Jupiter Icy moons Explorer (JUICE) mission is designed to explore the dynamics and composition of the Jovian system which is thought to potentially host habitable environments. Onboard the JUICE spacecraft, the Submillimeter Wave Instrument carries cryogenic low noise microwave amplifiers with the specific task to amplify the faint THz radiation signatures detected by the instrument receivers.  

A Rover during a dust storm on the red planet. Curiosity Rover on Mars

Mankind is curious. We strive to explore what is around us; the distant regions of outer space. In that attempt, we spend billions of dollars on spacecrafts equipped with sensors such as cameras and send them out on long journeys into the unknown. Often we forget how to get the information back to Earth. Voyager 1 is now (October 2021) 18.8 billion kilometers away from Earth. On Earth, we have big parabolic dishes to receive the images from these distant spacecrafts. LNF’s cryogenic amplifiers are used in these to maximize the bitrate in the communication with these spacecrafts. There are plans to build large arrays of hundreds of antennas on Earth to further increase the bitrate and maximize the use of these spacecrafts. 

NASA’s Goldstone 70m Deep Space Station (DSS) – Mojave Desert 



From weather forecasting to climate research, global monitoring of the Earth, by means of microwave and submillimeter wave remote sensing satellites collecting key atmospheric data, continues to evolve. The growing cube-sat market and new space approach is increasing the demand for high performance low noise amplifiers already used in scientific instrumentation. LNF is proud to support the commercial and scientific space markets with its’ newest generation of low noise amplifier products already benchmarked in space through the TROPICS mission, and in air through the latest 874 GHz channel addition to the ISMAR instrument. 

View of blue planet Earth from a space station window during a sunrise 3D rendering elements of this image furnished by NASA

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Radio astronomers use signals in the radio spectrum to look at objects in space.  Since the beginning of radio astronomy in the 1930s it has driven the development of the most sensitive radio receivers possible. Improvements in radio receiver design has traditionally yielded new discoveries. Lower noise in the receiver means fainter objects can be observed. Radio telescopes have been used to discover new phenomena or confirm theories about objects in space.  State of the art LNAs from Low Noise Factory are used both directly at the input of the radio telescope and as IF (intermediate frequency) amplifiers. 

Very Large array radio telescope in New Mexico


Project in focus

The SETI Institute’s Allen Telescope Array


The Allen Telescope Array (ATA) is the first radio telescope to be designed from the ground up to be used for SETI searches. The ATA, formally inaugurated in 2008, is a forerunner in the “Large Number of Small Dishes” radio telescope concept and is highly effective for a wide variety of science goals.  These include simultaneous surveys undertaken for SETI projects (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) and to search for brief flashes of radio emission known as fast radio bursts.

The 42 6-meter ATA antennas are currently undergoing a refurbishment program, which replaces the original receivers with a new broadband (1-15GHz) cryogenically cooled log-periodic feed. Low Noise Factory is supplying the Low Noise Amplifier for the new feeds.

Since the late 1990s, superconducting resonators as radiation detectors have gained in popularity in the 4-12 GHz band. When coupled to electromagnetic radiation, these resonators respond to the absorption of energy by a change in their resonance frequency. This change is detected by off-the-shelf microwave electronics. LNF’s cryogenic amplifiers are used in the readout chain to provide a high gain and very low noise which improves the accuracy and signal-to-noise ratio of the detection. Example applications include the detection of UVOIR radiation (Ultraviolet, Optical, and Infrared) and THz astronomy, high energy particle detection, and more recently, the detection of dark matter. Another area of application is electron spin resonance spectroscopy, which is used to study rare earth doped crystals for quantum information processing, coherence-limiting two-level systems (TLS) which are a serious challenge for quantum computing, and spin-active molecules for chemical and medical applications.

Whether you are in need of high speed communication from ground or in space, LNF low noise amplifier technology will provide your satellite link network the necessary bandwidth.

Internet satellites orbit the Earth Satellite technology communication concept 3D illustration

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Related publications

LNAs are used when doing measurements.   They are essential components both in general purpose equipment such as spectrum analyzers, vector network analyzers etc. and in custom test and measurement setups built for a single purpose. The general purpose LNAs used in measurement equipment are often a compromise between sensitivity and power handling capability. Sometimes additional sensitivity is needed that is not provided by the general purpose LNA built into the instrument. An example can be high frequency 6G development where an external LNA may be needed when doing over the air testing (OTA).   

Project in focus

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Project in focus

OpenSuperQ — a quantum computer with up to 100 qubits.


LNF is part of EU funded project OpenSuperQ (An Open Superconducting Quantum Computer). The aim of this 3 years project is to build a quantum computer with up to 100 qubits. This computer will be among the leading platforms in the world and the first of its kind in Europe. The OpenSuperQ consortium consists of 10 partners and is a joint collaboration between academia and industry.

LNF will develop and provide solutions for cryogenic microwave components which are required to control and read out the quantum computer.

For more information visit OpenSuperQ website.

Why choose LNF as your partner?

Having over 25 years of experience in this field with established partnerships and personalised approach.

Experience and research

The company associates have over 25 years of experience in this field from California Institute of Technology, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, University of Oxford and Chalmers University of Technology.

Long-time partnerships

We approach every project with passion. Collaborating with LNF is a futureproof investment, since we constantly stay two steps ahead of competition, by spending a lot of resources on academic research.


To us, cooperation means the exchange of knowledge. Together we can solve all challenges and finalize your projects quicker. We have experts in many fields.

Contact us for further information or if you would like to work with us on your next project.