A sampling of recent articles, press releases, etc. about student and amateur CubeSat / SmallSat projects and programs:

** Weiss School students part of SpaceX project – wptv.com

As a Space X Falcon 9 rocket launched into orbit on Monday, the students at Weiss School in Palm Beach Gardens cheered over a small piece of cargo that is theirs.

A group of middle schoolers has spent the last three years working on a small satellite known as a “cube sat” which is holding bacteria to be studied in space.

“We’ve been working on this for so long,” says 13-year-old Zoey Freedman.

** Crown Prince announces launch of first Jordanian mini satellite | Jordan Times

On this occasion, CPF’s CEO Tamam Mango was quoted in the statement as saying: “We proudly announce the launch of the first Jordanian mini satellite, designed and built by Jordanian engineers.”

She noted that the satellite was designed and built by 18 young engineering students, with support from five academics and consultants, in various engineering fields, from Jordanian universities. “Jordan has entered both the design sector and implementation of satellites, two elements in line with the Crown Prince Foundation’s mission, providing Jordanian youth with pivotal skills and tools to branch into various sectors, enhancing their capabilities, simultaneously enhancing Jordan’s position/status on various levels.”

** Asia-Pacific satellites on SpaceX’s SSO-A mission | SpaceTech Asia

Among the satellites launched were 13 satellites for Asia-Pacific (APAC) companies or those with a presence here – including the first private satellite ever launched by an Indian company. [Seven of the 13 satellites are from educational institutions.]

** AMSAT’s Fox-1Cliff Amateur Radio CubeSat Launched Successfully – ARRL

 A SpaceX Falcon 9 vehicle carried Fox-1Cliff and several other satellites into space on December 3 at approximately 1334 UTC from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, following a 1-day launch delay. (See the launch on YouTube.) According to AMSAT, at approximately 0030 UTC on December 4, several stations in Brazil — including PS8MT, PT9BM, and PT2AP — reported hearing the voice beacon “Fox-1Cliff Safe Mode,” confirming that the satellite was alive.

“Just before 0040 UTC, AMSAT Fox-1 Team Member Burns Fisher, WB1FJ, was the first to submit and upload telemetry to the AMSAT servers,” AMSAT reported on its website. “Initial telemetry values show the satellite to be in good health. Thanks to the 29 stations that contributed telemetry during Fox-1Cliff’s initial orbits.”

** Micro satellite ExseedSAT1 to fly on SpaceX – The Hindu BusinessLine

This satellite is freely available for all radio amateurs across the world. It is an open radio transponder that works on ham radio frequencies. One has to pay just Rs 100 license from the WPC to communicate through this satellite.

The Indian government has waived the need for security clearances for amateur radio, enabling a lot of students to quickly apply and obtain radio amateur license, Farhan told BusinessLine.

ExseedSAT1 aims to provide a major boost to private radio operators after ISRO-manufactured micro-satellite, HAMSAT, ceased operations about four years ago. The amateur radio services provide vital communication links during natural disasters.

** Annabelle Grant named winner of Yukon College CubeSat idea contest | Yukon College

Out of 15 submitted ideas from 15 contest participants, Annabelle Grant has been named the winner of the Yukon CubeSat idea contest. 

Grant’s name was pulled from a hat last week. Her idea for the micro-satellite payload is to have it track solid waste in oceans through photographs from low earth orbit.

Other notable ideas submitted to the contest last month involve using data collected from space for education and outreach with the public, using the CubeSat to transmit Yukon stories through amateur radio frequencies, and capturing visual and magnetic studies of the aurora.

As the contest winner, Grant’s name will be featured on the 10cm x 10cm x 20cm satellite due to be launched into orbit in 2020.

See also the Canadian CubeSat Project – Canada.ca.

** USI blasts off into space – The Shield

“Once I heard the word, ‘space’ and ‘USI to be involved with it,’ I immediately asked him how I could jump in on the project,” Loehrlein said. “And he said if he got the grant I’d be asked to be on the team.”

Loehrlein, a senior engineering and finance major, said it felt amazing when the university received the grant.

“It was kind of a mind-blowing opportunity,” Loehrlein said. “I didn’t really expect a small university like USI to originally get a NASA grant for two hundred thousand dollars. So hearing we actually got it and that I could work on a satellite while at USI, it was, honestly, something I couldn’t even fathom at the time.”

* AMSAT news on student and amateur CubeSat/smallsat projects: ANS-336 AMSAT News Service Special Bulletin

  • Fox-1Cliff Launch Targeted for December 2nd
  • AMSAT Web Adds Donation Portal
  • Amateur Radio Contest for Receiving PW-Sat2 Telemetry
  • Additional Amateur Radio Communication Cubesats Launch on SSO-A
  • AMSAT-DL Provides Update for Es’hail-2/P4A Geosynchronous Orbit
  • Nihon University NEXUS VU-mode Linear Transponder Launch Announcement
  • AMSAT Rover Award Updates
  • VUCC Awards-Endorsements for November 2018
  • Upcoming Satellite Operations Reported by KE4AL
  • ESA and RaspberryPi.org Collaborate on Astro Pi Mission Zero
  • MarCo Cubesats Relay NASA’s InSight Mars Lander Touchdown
  • Happy 20th Anniversary to the International Space Station
  • Satellite Shorts From All Over

Other CubeSat and smallsat news & info:

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The High Frontier: An Easier Way