INSPIRESat-1 primed for launch, says Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology

A collaborative effort by Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at the University of Colorado Boulder in the US, National Central University, Taiwan, Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and IIST, the small satellite is set to blast off aboard ISRO’s upcoming PSLV mission

September 04, 2021 07:02 pm | Updated 07:18 pm IST - THIRUVANANTHAPURAM

INSPIRESat-1. Photo: lasp.colorado.edu

INSPIRESat-1. Photo: lasp.colorado.edu

INSPIRESat-1 CubeSat, developed under the International Satellite Program in Research and Education (INSPIRE), is ready for launch, the Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST) has said.

The small satellite that weighs less than 10 kg will be launched aboard an upcoming Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) mission of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).

INSPIRESat-1 is a collaborative effort by the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP) at the University of Colorado Boulder in the U.S., the National Central University, Taiwan, and the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, apart from the IIST.

The satellite, which will be placed in a low earth orbit, is equipped with a Compact Ionosphere Probe for studying the earth's ionosphere. A constellation of earth and space-weather observation satellites is envisaged under the INSPIRE programme.

IIST role

IIST students were responsible for the design and development of the onboard computer and the electrical power supply for INSPIRESat-1.

S. Somanath, director, IIST, and the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), said on Saturday said that INSPIRESat-1 has been fully integrated, tested and is awaiting launch on a PSLV mission.

''It gave the IIST students hands-on experience in the areas of design, development and also miniaturisation since these are small satellites,'' said Y.V.N. Krishna Murthy, Registrar, IIST. The students also gained valuable experience from the global collaboration.

The INSPIRESat-1 mission was originally planned for 2020, but was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of the collaboration, IIST students also attended training programmes hosted by LASP.

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