in Space

AlSat Nano takes first colour image

Posted 16 January 2017 · Add Comment

AlSat Nano - a joint Algerian Space Agency and UK Space Agency nanosatellite mission - has captured and downloaded its first full colour image.

The image was taken by the Open University C3D2 instrument’s wide field camera on 3rd December 2016 over the Arkhangelsk Oblast region, on the North West coast of Russia, marking a step forward in demonstrated UK nanosatellite capability.

The image was captured under twilight conditions at dawn, showing the coastline to the top of the image, and a brief winter sunrise over the arctic region with a deep red-brown hue. Through the cloud cover there is evidence of hills and snow on mountains and mist in the river valleys.

The object in the foreground is the Oxford Space Systems Ltd AstroTube Boom payload, also carried on board the spacecraft.

AlSat Nano is a joint nanosatellite mission between the UK Space Agency and Algerian Space Agency (ASAL) as part of an on-going initiative to enhance collaboration.

The UK Space Agency has funded the design, build and verification of the spacecraft at Surrey Space Centre (SSC), University of Surrey, as a hands-on learning exercise for Algerian postgrad students to demonstrate the practical elements of low cost space technology. ASAL has provided the launch, and operations are being undertaken in Algeria by ASAL operators trained at SSC.

Prof Guglielmo Aglietti, Director of Surrey Space Centre, said: “AlSat Nano has been an exciting project for the Surrey Space Centre to be leading. Educational and research elements, and the technology knowledge transfer with the Algerian Space Agency were key parts of this project. Additionally, the development of this nanosatellite platform has been a great opportunity to work with UK payload providers, who are demonstrating some exciting new technologies.”

AlSat Nano is Algeria’s first CubeSat mission and is globally showcasing the capability of UK technology in partnership with industry and academia. With a spacecraft the size of a shoebox yet featuring all the core subsystems of much larger satellites, the programme demonstrates how CubeSats can be assembled quickly and launched at a fraction of the cost. This will help Algeria strengthen its domestic space technology capability by giving their scientists and engineers first-hand experience of spacecraft operations.

Dr Abdewahab Chikouche, Director of Space Programmes at Algerian Space Agency, said: “The Alsat-1N project is a concrete example of the success of our cooperation with UKSA. This project, very enriching from the scientific and technological point of view, allowed ASAL engineers to progress in the integration and testing of nanosatellites and acquire autonomy in its operation. This project will enable Algerian researchers and academics to strengthen national capabilities in advanced space technology.”

The AlSat Nano mission hosts and has demonstrated three payloads, showcasing innovative technologies from UK suppliers:  C3D2 imager from Open University, AstroTube Boom from Oxford Space Systems and Thin Film Solar Cell from Swansea University.

Dr Ben Taylor, the SSC AlSat Nano Project Lead, said: “The Alsat Nano mission has been a great opportunity to work with a diverse and committed team across the UK and Algeria. The spacecraft carries some exciting new technologies which are already returning some great results and we are looking forward to further results as the mission continues”.

The mission builds on the success of the flight services division at Surrey Space Centre, who are involved with a range of on-going spacecraft missions including CubeSats and larger scale missions. A major on-going project is RemoveDebris, a €15.2M mission led by Surrey, aiming to be one of the world’s first demonstrations of space junk removal when it launches later this year. 
 

* required field

Post a comment

Other Stories
Advertisement
Latest News

Emirates renews its support to Mauritius and Seychelles

Emirates has announced its renewed support to Mauritius and the Seychelles by extending its global marketing agreement with the respective Tourism Boards of the two countries.

Global standards, collaboration are key to future of ground handling

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has highlighted three key priorities for the ground handling industry to support the growing demand for air travel: harmonizing global standards to improve safety, improving

SAA retains 4-Star Skytrax ranking

South African Airways (SAA) has maintained a 4-Star Skytrax ranking, in both Business and Economy Class, for a 16th consecutive year.

Aviation Africa 2018: Cyber security: Not if, but when

An airline’s greatest cyber-security threat may also be its most precious asset – its staff – according to panellists speaking at Aviation Africa in Cairo. Victoria Moores reports.

Aviation Africa: MROs eye tremendous market in Africa

Speaking at the Aviation Africa MRO panel Hisham Ali, consultant to the Chairman of Egypt Air, said that African MRO market is growing. Africa represents four percent of the global 25,368 fleet and 3.9 percent of global 75.6 billion USD

Aviation Africa 2018 gets under way in Cairo

The Aviation Africa Summit and Exhibition 2018 is under way in Cairo with over 980 delegates and visitors at the two-day event.

TAA SK0902311218
See us at
AAD2018 BTAirCargoAFA_BT220318210219Global Aerospace BT010518