The website KickSat.org has been launched to give hundreds of people the opportunity to sponsor a small spacecraft they can call their own that will be launched into space.
KickSat.org is a spare time project run by Zac Manchester KD2BHC, an aerospace engineering graduate student at Cornell University, to launch a CubeSat filled with hundreds of Sprite ChipSat proof of concept spacecraft that he has developed into low earth orbit to demonstrate their viability. He needs to raise at least $30,000 to do the mission and has launched a public appeal to help raise the funds for the project via KickSat.org and the KickStarter creative project funding website.
Donors who donate $300 or more will be able to call one of the Sprite spacecraft their own, name it and specify a short message that it will transmit. Groups and clubs can sponsor small fleets of Sprites. The transmissions of the small spacecraft will be able to be received by amateur radio operators around the world with the appropriate equipment including members of the GENSO network.
Zac is doing the project because he is passionate about the democratisation of space exploration and hopes that by encouraging members of the public to be involved in hands on space research many more, and more ambitious, missions might be possible in future.
Watch Zac KD2BHC’s video
Daily Mail newspaper – Your own personal Sputnik: Launch a satellite and beam signals from orbit for just $300