Odisha man, team builds private satellite

10 cm cube-sized communication satellite will be launched into space by a U.S.-based firm in Nov.

September 17, 2018 01:46 am | Updated 01:46 am IST - BERHAMPUR

 Gurudatta Panda with the small satellite.

Gurudatta Panda with the small satellite.

Gurudatta Panda, a 28-year-old from Odisha’s Berhampur, is part of a small team of technocrats that built a satellite for a private satellite design, manufacturing and management company.

The eight-member team, including Mr. Panda, from Hyderabad-based Exseed Space Private Limited has constructed 10 cm cube-sized communication satellite, which will be launched into space by the United States-based SpaceX in November.

Last phase tests

Speaking to The Hindu over telephone, Mr. Panda said the small satellite will carry a linear transponder on FM for voice communication.

Last phase tests of the satellite are being conducted.

He claimed this is the first of its kind private space endeavour.

Natural calamities

Through private companies like his, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) now plans to groom space start-ups that build new solutions in communication satellites, applications from remote sensing and rocketry.

“This satellite will serve the ham or the amateur radio community. As a result, it will be of great help during natural calamities, when conventional communication services get disrupted,” he said.

After the launch, this artificial satellite will be on a polar orbit with two passes over India everyday. The public will be able to receive this artificial satellite’s beacon on 145.90 Mhz using a TV tuner and USB dongles, Mr. Panda added.

He said the eight-member team involved in construction of the small private satellite involved four technocrats and four managerial staff members.

He and Exseed Space co-founder Ashhar Farhan were the communication engineers who played a key role in building the satellite.

Sources said this small communication satellite has been constructed a cost of less than ₹20 lakh.

Mr. Panda’s father Prana Chandra Panda is a retired Ayurveda doctor and his mother Manisha Dash a teacher.

Born and brought up in the city, Mr. Panda completed his diploma in engineering from Uma Charan Pattnaik Engineering School in Berhampur, his BTech in Electronics and Telecommunication from Centurion University in Gajapati district. In 2011, he had joined the Railways and worked there for three years. He left the job in 2014 for an MTech course at the National Institute of Science and Technology (NIST) near Berhampur. After MTech, he joined Exseed Space.

Ham radio

Mr. Panda, a ham radio enthusiast, helped in communication through his ham set-up when cyclone Phailin hit Ganjam district in 2013. He hoped that more youngsters from Odisha get interested in aerospace technology, an emerging field of development in the country.

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