FUNcube – an educational satellite for home and school

The FUNcube nanosat (now officially designated AO-73) reached orbit last November via a Russian Dnepr rocket. The FUNcube project is led by AMSAT-UK and is intended as

 a complete educational single CubeSat project with the goal of enthusing and educating young people about radio, space, physics and electronics.

The project encompasses the FUNcube Dongle, which is a low cost device that plugs into a USB port and turns your computer into

 the “ground segment”, or a radio receiver designed to allow anyone to try their hand at reception of satellites like FUNcube anywhere on Earth as part of a global educational collaboration project collecting information from space.

(The Dongle also needs to connect to a simple antenna.)


The satellite has materials on the external surface of the satellite configured with temperature sensors to provide an experiment to study heat radiation and to demonstrate telemetry collection and space research methods. There is now a teachers guide available on how to combine this on-board experiment data with the ground station:

As shown in the above diagram, the telemetry data obtain can be shared at the FUNcube Real Time Data on line warehouse.


Find more about FUNcube and other space radio projects in the HobbySpace Radio section.