Radio hams Professor Sharlene Katz, WB6FFE and Professor James Flynn, WB9AWX have received $25,000 from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory for a CubeSat project.
There is also an award of $30,000 for the project listed by The University Corporation.
The Daily Sundial newspaper carries a report on the California State University Northridge (CSUN) CubeSat project which says the 2U CubeSat aims to test alternative power techniques for satellites and spacecrafts and is estimated to cost between $60,000 and $80,000.
“And that’s all just parts. Our labor, of course, is for free,” joked Sharlene Katz [WB6FFE], Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering.
Typically, it would cost another $45,000 just to launch the satellite. But thanks to their sponsorship from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, the satellite will be hitching a ride with a shuttle in a few years.
In order to communicate with the CubeSat, the team is also building an automated ground station on top of Jacaranda Hall. The system is going to be using old equipment from a previous experiment.
“There’s a lot of problems with the ground station right now, it’s old equipment,” said member Rufus Simon. “We’re fixing it! Step by step.”
The station will not only help the team track CSUN’s CubeSat, but other satellites as well. It will become part of the Global Educational Network for Satellite Operations (GENSO), which is a community of universities across the world who track and communicate with satellites.
Phase two of the project is set to start during the fall semester of 2013, and the team is hoping to complete the satellite by December of 2014.
Read the full Daily Sundial story at
CSUN New Sponsored Programs http://www.csun.edu/sponsoredprograms/status/newprojects.php
CSUN Research & Sponsored Projects http://www.csun.edu/grip/research/
Global Educational Network for Satellite Operations (GENSO) http://www.esa.int/Education/Global_Educational_Network_for_Satellite_Operations