Ancillary Electrical Units (AEU)

The Ancillary Electronic Units (AEUs) have the following main functions:‎

  • To supply secondary power to the Front End Electronics (FEE) of each camera.‎
  • To synchronise the various sub-systems: Cameras, AEUs internal power converters and ‎camera heating.‎

The instrument includes two different types of ancillary electrical units. The F-AEU is ‎connected to the two fast cameras and each of the two N-AEUs is connected to 12 normal ‎cameras. They are located in the Service Module of the satellite and are controlled by the Instrument Control Unit (ICU).

The cameras are supplied with secondary power from the AEUs as follows:‎

  • ‎2 normal-AEU boxes, one for 12 normal cameras. Each N-AEU box will contain 12 ‎independent DC/DC converters to supply the connected N-FEEs.
  • One Fast-AEU box which will supply secondary power to the two Fast-FEEs, and includes ‎a Master Synchronization Module (MSM).

The synchronisation signals are generated in two master synchronisation modules (MSM) inside the F-AEU ‎operating in cold redundancy.‎ The synchronisation signals are distributed from there to the Camera FEEs, the AEUs internal power converters and ‎to the camera heater control inside the Service Module.

The AEU Team

The Ancillary Electronic Units are under responsibility of ESA/ESTEC.


PLATO – Revealing habitable worlds around solar-like stars
Definition Study Report, ESA-SCI(2017)1, April 2017