Successful Lift-off for Amateur Radio STRaND-1 Smartphone Satellite

Dr Susan Jason working on STRaND-1

Dr Susan Jason working on STRaND-1

The first UK CubeSat, STRaND-1, was launched on Monday, February 25 at 1231 UT on the PSLV-C20 rocket from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Satish Dhawan space centre. Deployment from the launch vehicle into a 785 km orbit took place about 20 minutes later. Signals from STRaND-1 were received by Nader Omer ST2NH in Sudan at 1555 UT and by the Surrey Space Centre on Monday evening.

STRaND stands for Surrey Training, Research and Nanosatellite Demonstration and the programme is intended to be a long-term arrangement between the space company SSTL and academic researchers at the Surrey Space Centre (SSC), with STRaND-1 the first of a long line of STRaND nanosatellites.

The SSTL employees and SSC researchers involved with the STRaND programme are all volunteers. It is a condition of the programme that volunteers from SSTL and SSC use their own, free time for STRaND activities (such as lunches and breaks). The project has no budget for staff so is entirely dependent on volunteers.

The innovative STRaND-1 CubeSat was built and tested in just three months. It will demonstrate the feasibility of using cheap smartphone electronics to control a spacecraft. STRaND-1 carries an amateur radio AX.25 packet radio downlink on 437.568 MHz using 9k6 bps FSK modulated data HDLC frame, NRZI encoding. The telemetry format is available here. Watch the videos in the STRaND-1 video archive.

Further information on STRaND-1 at http://amsat-uk.org/satellites/strand-1/

Watch Launch of Indian PSLV Rocket with Saral & 6 Commercial Secondary Payloads

SSTL launch press release http://www.sstl.co.uk/News-and-Events.aspx?story=2123

STRaND-1 Ground Station Testing Video

STRaND-1 Ground Station Antennas

STRaND-1 Ground Station Antennas

The UK smartphone amateur radio satellite STRaND-1 should launch Feb. 25 at 1225 UT.

At the heart of STRaND-1 is a Google Nexus One smartphone with an Android operating system. Smartphones contain highly advanced technologies and incorporate several key features that are integral to a satellite – such as cameras, radio links, accelerometers and high performance computer processors – almost everything a spacecraft needs except the solar panels and propulsion.

Being the first smartphone satellite in orbit is just one of many ‘firsts’ that STRaND-1 is hoping to achieve. It will also fly innovative new technologies such as a ‘WARP DRiVE’ (Water Alcohol Resistojet Propulsion Deorbit Re-entry Velocity Experiment) and electric Pulsed Plasma Thrusters (PPTs); both ‘firsts’ to fly on a nanosatellite. It is also flying a 3D printed part – believed to be the first to fly in space!

A video of ground station testing has just been released.

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Watch Live Video of UK STRaND-1 Smartphone Satellite Launch

The STRaND-1 build and test phase took just 3 months

The STRaND-1 build and test phase took just 3 months

The UK smartphone satellite STRaND-1 is expected to launch from India on Monday, Feb. 25 at 12:25 GMT. You can follow the launch on Twitter or watch live video.

STRaND-1 and other CubeSats carrying amateur radio payloads are planned to launch on the ISRO PSLV-C20 rocket into a 785 km orbit.

STRaND-1 carries an amateur radio 9600 bps AX.25 packet radio downlink on 437.568 MHz. It is hoping to be the first ever satellite to carry a smartphone into space and is also believed be the first satellite to use a part produced with a 3D Printer.

On Twitter the Surrey Space Centre @SpaceAtSurrey tweeted:

Official launch hashtag of STRaND-1 spacecraft is #S1Launch. Post launch we will be using #STRaND1 hashtag. Launch time:12.25 GMT 25th Feb 2013 #UniOfSurrey #SSTL

Launch Authorisation Board (LAB) for PSLV – C20 @STRaND mission has cleared the launch on Monday, Feb 25, 2013. @university of surrey #S1Launch

Live video launch feeds for Monday’s PSLV launch http://www.webcast.gov.in/live/ and http://ibnlive.in.com/livetv/

Launch times can and do change at the last minute so follow Twitter for the latest information.

Follow Surrey Nanosats https://twitter.com/SurreyNanosats

Read more about STRaND-1 at http://www.amsat-uk.org/?page_id=12196

STRaND-1 telemetry format http://www.amsat-uk.org/?page_id=12875

STRaND-1 videos http://www.amsat-uk.org/?page_id=12472

Other satellites on the same launch http://www.amsat-uk.org/?p=12180

STRaND-1 on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/nanosats

Provisional initial track of STRaND-1

Provisional initial track of STRaND-1

STRaND-1 smartphone CubeSat mounted on PSLV rocket

Panoramic view of SARAL and smaller satellites including STRaND-1 attached to the PSLV C20 - Image credit ISRO

Panoramic view of SARAL and smaller satellites including STRaND-1 attached to the PSLV C20 – Image credit ISRO

The STRaND-1 build and test phase took just 3 months

The STRaND-1 build and test phase took just 3 months

The launch rehearsal of PSLV-C20 with the primary satellite SARAL and six other satellites has been completed satisfactorily at SDSC SHAR, Sriharikota. Mission Readiness Review and meeting of Launch Authorisation Board are scheduled on Feb 22, 2013.

STRaND-1 is a joint mission between Surrey Space Centre at University of Surrey and Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL). There will be an amateur radio AX.25 packet radio 9k6 bps downlink on 437.568 MHz and the launch is expected to take place on Feb 25.

STRaND-1 information and videos http://www.amsat-uk.org/?page_id=12196

STRaND-1 telemetry format http://www.amsat-uk.org/?page_id=12875

Other satellites on the same launch http://www.amsat-uk.org/?p=12180

ISRO PSLV-C20 status http://www.isro.org/pslv-c20/c20-status.aspx

The World’s First Smartphone In Space

STRaND-1 flight ready February 2013 with Shaun Kenyon, Dr Peter Shaw, Dr Chris Bridges

STRaND-1 flight ready February 2013 with Shaun Kenyon, Dr Peter Shaw, Dr Chris Bridges

In this video Professor Sir Martin Sweeting G3YJO talks about STRaND-1 which aims to be the world’s first smartphone satellite in space.

STRaND-1 a UK mission, jointly developed by the University of Surrey’s Surrey Space Centre (SSC) and Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL), to send the world’s first smartphone satellite into orbit is due to launch on February 25.

Also appearing in the video are Shaun Kenyon and Dr. Chris Bridges both of whom have given presentations on the STRaND project to the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium held each year in Guildford.

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The World's First Smartphone In Space

STRaND-1 flight ready February 2013 with Shaun Kenyon, Dr Peter Shaw, Dr Chris Bridges

STRaND-1 flight ready February 2013 with Shaun Kenyon, Dr Peter Shaw, Dr Chris Bridges

In this video Professor Sir Martin Sweeting G3YJO talks about STRaND-1 which aims to be the world’s first smartphone satellite in space.

STRaND-1 a UK mission, jointly developed by the University of Surrey’s Surrey Space Centre (SSC) and Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL), to send the world’s first smartphone satellite into orbit is due to launch on February 25.

Also appearing in the video are Shaun Kenyon and Dr. Chris Bridges both of whom have given presentations on the STRaND project to the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium held each year in Guildford.

 

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ISRO plans SARAL and Amateur Radio satellites launch for February 25

AAUSAT3 Flight Model and Engineering Model - Image credit Aalborg University

AAUSAT3 Flight Model and Engineering Model – Image credit Aalborg University

The Hindu newspaper reports that the first launch of the year by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will be the PSLV-CA (PSLV-C20). It will carry the ocean study spacecraft SARAL as well as satellites carrying amateur radio payloads. The launch into a 785 km orbit is currently planned to take place on February 25.

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UK STRaND-1 CubeSat Video

Dr Chris Bridges and STRaND

Dr Chris Bridges and STRaND hardware

In this video Surrey Space Centre’s Dr. Peter Shaw talks us through the anatomy of the highly advanced UK CubeSat STRaND-1.

The innovative amateur radio STRaND-1 CubeSat aims to carry a NEXUS Android Smartphone into space to demonstrate the feasibility of using cheap Smartphone electronics to control a spacecraft.

A software-based speech synthesiser will be included to pay homage to the UOSAT family of satellites (OSCAR-9 and OSCAR-11) that were launched in the 1980′s.

STRaND-1 will carry an amateur radio payload with an AX.25 packet radio downlink on 437 MHz using data rates of 9k6 or 19k2 bps.

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In space no one can hear you scream?

Scream in Space won a competition run by Surrey Satellite Techonology Ltd (SSTL) in 2011 to propose an idea for an app to run on their STRaND-1 smartphone nanosatellite.

With the help of the public, we’re testing the hypothesis that in space no one can hear you scream. It’s a statement that has been well known in popular culture since appearing as the tagline to the 1979 sci-fi film ‘Alien’ – but how many people have really tested this claim? Whilst the conclusion of this experiment may seem clear to many, it is our hope that through this investigation thousands of people worldwide can learn more about several aspects of physics (including orbits, acoustics and much more) and get excited about the field of satellite technology!

In coming up with this idea, we thought about what features the Android phone has which are not usually present on conventional satellites – and naturally the speaker and microphone are two such components. It would seem a shame not to leverage the power of these additions, and so the idea was born…

Read more about the project on the SSTL blog and New Scientist, or listen to the Cambridge University Spaceflight team discussing Scream in Space on the Space Boffins podcast earlier in 2012:

Enter your scream! Here

Vote the best scream here

Hurry only Ten days left to Scream

2012 Cambridge University Spaceflight

Smartphone and Kinect Satellite Presentations at Guildford

Dr Christopher Bridges (2nd from left) discussing why space is cool on Sky News

Dr Chris Bridges recently appeared on the nationwide TV channel Sky News discussing why space is cool. On September 15-16 he will be giving two presentations to the AMSAT-UK International Space Colloquium at the Holiday Inn, Guildford, GU2 7XZ.

Chris will cover the Nexus Android Smartphone amateur radio satellite STRaND-1 which will carry both a Resistojet and a Pulsed Plasma Thruster (PPT) module and STRaND-2 which comprises two 3U CubeSats that will use Microsoft Xbox Kinect controller technology for docking.

UPDATE: For videos of the two STRaND presentations see http://www.uk.amsat.org/?p=10297

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