The Laser Communications Relay Demonstration, or LCRD, is a project managed by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center to perform communications tests from GEO using FSO technology. LCRD uses infrared lasers at 1550nm to transmit data via uplink and downlink. The system will be hosted on the Air Force Research Laboratory’s STPSat-6 spacecraft and has a planned mission life of 2 years. 
The space system uses software-defined differential phase shift keying (DPSK) for transmission and has redundancy in the form of a high-speed RF terminal in case the optics cannot transmit, i.e., if there is cloud cover or other interference. The ground stations include the JPS Optical Communications Telescope Laboratory at Table Mountain, the RF ground station in White Sands, New Mexico, and the LCRD Mission Operations Center, also located in White Sands.