Student and amateur CubeSat news roundup – Jan.27.2019

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

** From Basement to Orbit – A New Class of Personal Satellites by Joe Latrell — Kickstarter – Crowdfunding the launch of a picosat PocketQube.

Development is nearly complete. The design for the PocketQube is finalized, and the hardware is now functional. There are still some integration processes and software work to do along with various testing requirements. We are also in the process of getting our licensing with the FCC, ITU, and other government agencies. We have spent nearly $50,000 getting to this point. To take it across the finish line, we need to raise $50,000 more. Our plan is to launch Discovery in 2019 into a 500 km (310 miles) Sun synchronous orbit. This location gives the Discovery optimal viewing of the Earth and makes it easier for us to retrieve data and upload new instructions. But in order to be ready to fly, we have to finish a lot of fine details between now and then.

More at Kickstarter campaign starts to finance launch of garage-built cubesat | Behind The Black.

** Winner Announced for the 2018 Altair Feko Student Competition – HPC Wire – Design of a CubeSat antenna by Didier Goulet-Tran, an under-graduate student from Polytechnique Montreal, Canada, wins student tech contest-

Goulet-Tran’s entry utilized Feko to design planar reflect array antenna, where the whole antenna system can be folded on one side of the satellite and saving space for CubeSat application. The challenge in the design of reflect array is to choose the shape of the printed surfaces to form a collimated beam over a reasonable bandwidth. The designed reflect array was fabricated and its performance validated using measurements in anechoic chamber achieving a bandwidth of 6.5%.

** JAXA launches its first startup-built satellite RAPIS-1 & 6 other satellites | SpaceTech Asia – Japanese launch included the following university smallsats:

  1. AOBE-VELOX-4, a 2U cubesat designed by Japan’s Kyutech and Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University (NTU) to observe and image the Lunar Horizon Glow
  2. Hodoyoshi 2 or RISESat (Rapid International Scientific Experiment Satellite), a 50-kg satellite developed  by the University of Tokyo, and carrying 8 international scientific payloads
  3. OrigamiSat 1, a 3U Cubesat with a membrane deployment system, by Tokyo Institute of Technology (TITech), and
  4. NEXUS, a 1U cubesat for amateur radio, designed at Nihon University in collaboration with Japan AMSAT Association (JAMSAT).

** Sky is no limit for students at Space Kidz India – The Sunday Guardian Live – A recent launch of India’s PSLV included the secondary payload Kalamsat-V2, a student-built cubesat for technology demos.

HYDERABAD: When minutes after the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)’s PSLV-C44 rocket soared into skies at 11.39 pm on Thursday, Chairman Dr K. Sivan congratulated one and all in his teams, but importantly the students from Chennai, who made Kalamsat V2, the world’s lightest satellite that went into space along with DRDO’s Microsat and their leader Dr Srimathy Kesan.

Dr Srimathy Kesan, who runs Space Kidz India (SKI) from T. Nagar in Chennai, was the center of applause from across the country for her school boys who built the tiny cube satellite weighing just 1.2 kg. She went ecstatic with her mobile continuously getting calls and messages since Friday morning and told this newspaper on phone from Chennai that: “My dream comes true and I am overwhelmed.”

See also India’s 1st Rocket Launch of 2019 Sends 2 Satellites Into Orbit –

** AMSAT news on student and amateur CubeSat/smallsat projects: ANS-027 AMSAT News Service Special Bulletin

  • OrigamiSat-1 Requests Help for Testing 5.84 GHz Downlink
  • OrigamiSat-1 Reception Challenges
  • AO-85 Operations Re-Started – Telemetry Requested
  • ARISS TV Transmitter Back on Earth for Inspection, Possible Repair
  • ARISS Officers Elected
  • Upcoming ARISS Contact Schedule
  • Limited ISS SSTV Scheduled for January 30 – February 1
  • Registration Open for “VHF Super Conference”
  • AMSAT 50th Anniversary Awards Program
  • Upcoming Satellite Operations
  • NASA Administrator Addresses Furloughed Employees
  • Australia’s First Commercial Launch Facility to be Built
  • India Will Fly 100 Student Satellites
  • Satellite Shorts From All Over

General CubeSat/SmallSat info:


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