UKube-1 nanosatellite and TechDemoSat-1 have started in-orbit commissioning
The UK Space Agency has launched its first cubesat mission, involving a nanosatellite named UKube-1 that will be used to fly educational packages, test new technologies and carry out new space research at a fraction of the cost of a regular satellite.
The satellite was launched from a Soyuz rocket this week, alongside a larger UK satellite named TechDemoSat-1, the first in-orbit satellite project directly funded by the Technology Strategy Board.
Designed by Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL), the satellite contains a number of projects developed by partners across the country. Instruments on board TechDemoSat-1 will be used to measure cosmic rays, predict space weather and detect the shape of the Earth’s surface.
Tim Just, Head of Space at the Technology Strategy Board, said:
“TechDemoSat-1 is the first in-orbit satellite project directly funded by the Technology Strategy Board. This hugely exciting and anticipated development will provide true space flight heritage to a number of new ideas and companies.