Thursday, 22 December 2016

The creation of miniature satellites could be the next major space revolution

The creation of miniature satellites could be the next major space revolution

At present the world is living two strong trends in space, on the one hand we have the competition for the creation of reusable rockets, which will serve to reduce costs and provide access to new scientific projects; while on the other it is the space race to see who is the first agency to arrive and conquer Mars. But behind all this, we can find many projects that seek to be "the next big spatial trend", and today we will know the case of miniature satellites.

The reduction in the size of the satellites has been an approach that appears from time to time throughout the world, because as is currently the case with technology, the trend toward miniaturization is something present in various fields, but curiously not in space where they are still sent large satellites, equipped with a large number of components to perform all sorts of tasks and also have backup systems, because if something goes wrong up there no one can help repair it. But this could change soon.

From satellites for personal use, even for complex investigations
As part of a research project, students from Arizona State University have developed what could be the next generation of miniature satellites. At the moment there are several companies trying to make this type of devices, but the first prototypes have not given very good results, hence the importance of this new project.

The creation of miniature satellites could be the next major space revolution

Is called 'SunCube FemtoSat' and consists of a small cube of just three centimeters, 35 grams and solar panels for energy supply , you will be able to add components for communications, data collection by sensors or other components. Its manufacturing has been based on recycled parts and scrap, so its cost could barely exceed $ 200, not counting the additional components inside.

According to NASA, send a satellite through its program of space transportation we represent a cost of approximately $ 60,000 per kilo, so send this small satellite barely exceed 1000 dollars, a significant reduction in cost and could give Access to hundreds of new projects, both personal and scientific.

We also have to consider the fact that it is currently seeking to implement the use of reusable rockets, for which costs could decrease further and be available to almost anyone interested. Jekan Thanga, teacher and project leader, said:

"We are interested in combating the problem of access to space, and we want students to be able to send experiments to space," he said. "With something as small as this satellite, You can make mistakes and send them back."

It can certainly be interesting that people have access to space researchers, but unfortunately not mentioned anything about the problem of space junk , something that is becoming an important factor in our Earth orbit.

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