TeikyoSat-3 – Slime Mold from Space

Dictyostelium discoideum - Slime Mold - Image credit Freien Universität Berlin

Dictyostelium discoideum – Slime Mold – Image credit Freien Universität Berlin

Never before have images of Slime Mold growth been transmitted from space using amateur radio but students from Teikyo University plan to do just that with their TeikyoSat-3 satellite.

The TeikyoSat-3 team say “A slime mold is a microbe without a brain, its ecology has been studied by many research institutions with the expectation of applying the behavior of slime molds to network traffic and information technology. Our micro satellite, TeikyoSat-3, takes a picture of the growth process of the slime mold, dictyostelium discoideum, in space, and then transmits the pictures to Earth using amateur radio.”

Closer to the launch date they hope to release information to enable radio amateurs to receive the pictures of the slime mold directly from the satellite.

Pictures will also be released via the web which will enable people to identify the difference in motion of the slime mold in space and on the ground.

TeikyoSat-3 plans to have a 100 mW CW telemetry beacon and a 800 mW 1200 bps AFSK image data downlink on 437.450 MHz. More information is available from http://club.uccl.teikyo-u.ac.jp/~space_system_society/

It is planned to launch TeikyoSat-3 into a 400km 65 degree orbit on a Japanese H-IIA launch vehicle. While the TeikyoSat-3 website appears to indicate a 2013 launch the Wiki page 2014_in_spaceflight lists it as being on the same H-IIA flight as GPM-Core, STARS-II, KSAT2, OPUSAT, Invader and ITF-1 in June 2014.

TeikyoSat-3 site in Google English http://tinyurl.com/TeikyoSat

For further information on Japanese satellites with amateur radio payloads that are being built see