Kickstarter crowdfunding site launches in the UK

Kickstarter, which been used to fund a number of Amateur Radio projects in the USA, has now launched in the UK.

Radio ham Zac Manchester KD2BHC used Kickstarter to raise $74,586 in donations to fund the development and deployment of 200 amateur radio KickSat sprite satellites.

The amateur radio satellite project ArduSat managed to raise donations of $106,330 in just 30 days.

Kickstarter is not just about raising large sums of money, for example Sandy Antunes used Kickstarter to raise $2,780 to buy a ham radio transceiver and antennas to create an amateur radio satellite ground station Calliope

Read the BBC News report at

Kickstarter in the UK

TubeSat aims to test Ion Engine

FRETS1 TubeSat – Image Credit Wes Faler

Wes Faler is building a small satellite called Fluid & Reason Engine Test Satellite 1 or FRETS1.

FRETS1 is a TubeSat-style picosatellite that aims to fly in 2013 on an Interorbital Systems Neptune rocket into a 310 km sun synchronous orbit. Its mission is to test a new kind of ion engine, one designed for higher thrust and lower power than traditional designs.

It’s planned to use a closed cell foam filled with pressurized nitrogen, vaporizing the supporting plastic and releasing the enclosed nitrogen using a spark system similar to that used by Pulsed Plasma Thrusters (PPTs).  PPTs create an arc across the face of a solid Teflon bar, turning a few micrograms of Teflon into plasma.  The plasma moves along the PPT’s cathode and anode by Lorentz forces, much the same way that a rail gun accelerates its conducting projectile.

This video gives a brief overview of what a TubeSat is.

Watch SatTV Technology Update – TubeSat

Note it is understood the first launches will take place in California rather than the site mentioned in the video.

Building An Ion Engine

FRETS1 TubeSat

Interorbital Systems

Tubesat – Image Credit Interorbital Systems

Interview with author of DIY Satellite Platform

Tubesat - Image Credit Interorbital Systems

Have you ever wanted to build your own personal satellite but your last name doesn’t start with Gates or Branson? Well, now there’s good news. For the price of a car you can now build, test and launch your own personal satellite at home.

Dr. Sandy Antunes, Author of DIY Satellite Platform, talks about building his own amateur radio personal spacecraft Project Calliope. The best part (besides having your own satellite) is that you can now do some serious science.

Find out what kind of satellite Dr. Antunes is building and how he’s running the same kinds of tests the large Aerospace companies do, but for a fraction of the cost.

Project Calliope:

Watch How to build your own personal satellite

Dr. Sandy Antunes used Kickstarter to raise funds for the project

Amazon – DIY satellite Platform

Interorbital Systems

MURSAT1 – A (Hacker) Space Art Project

This video shows a presentation on the mur.sat TubeSat MURSAT1 that was given at the Chaos Computer Camp on August 13, 2011.

A team of about 15 people around (Graz/Austria) have build their first Nanosatellite called MURSAT1, based on the Interorbital Systems TubeSat and developed further following their research. In 2012 MURSAT1 should be launched into a 310 km orbit.

The amateur radio TubeSat carries a camera and a microphone.  The command and control uplink is in the 145.9 MHz band and the downlink in the 435 MHz band. Further info at mur.sat wiki

Watch mur.sat – A (Hacker) Space Art Project – CCCamp 2011

This talk gives an overview of the project and the technical hacking done so far.

The team say Mursat1 itself will become our performer, taking self portraits with a camera, transmitting data about his position relative to earth by torquers, receiving and translating particle detection and collision with a piezo microphone, sending compressed audiodata for radio transmission on earth, hosting children’s wishes to become a shooting star themselves, counting.

Speaker: Bernhard Tittelbach, Christian Pointner
EventID: 4575
Event: Chaos Communication Camp 2011 (CCCamp 2011) of the Chaos Computer Club [CCC]
Location: Luftfahrtmuseum Finowfurt, Museumstr. 1, 16244 Schorfheide near Berlin, Germany
Language: English
Start: 13.08.2011 19:30:00 +02:00

Interorbital Systems Feature in SatMagazine

The March issue of SatMagazine features a 4 page article by Randa Relich Milliron, CEO and Co-Founder of Interorbital Systems.

Interorbital Systems plans to launch a number of amateur radio CubeSats along with dozens of TubeSats on it’s Neptune 9 rocket.

Among the CubeSats to be launch by Interorbital Systems is Euroluna’s Romit1 which aims to be the first CubeSat to use propulsion to significantly raise its orbit, from 310 to 700 km.

The Interorbital Systems article appears on page 90 and is followed on page 94 by an article on the Space Foundation which aims to promote science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in schools.

Download your free copy of the March SatMagazine

Neptune TubeSat and CubeSat Launcher

Randa Relich Milliron CEO Interorbital Systems

Randa Relich Milliron CEO Interorbital Systems

The October issue of Sat Magazine carries an 8 page article by Randa Relich Milliron, Interorbital Systems Chief Executive Officer, in which she describes the Neptune rockets and their TubeSat and CubeSat payloads.

The first Neptune 9 rocket is planned to launch mid 2012 and will carry 40+ TubeSats and CubeSats. A number of amateur radio CubeSats will be on this launch including Vietnam’s F-1 and the Danish EuroLuna, Romit 1.

Read pages 46-53 of the October Sat Magazine at

Interorbital Systems