(16 February 2021 – SFL) The Norwegian House Company (NOSA) has awarded House Flight Laboratory (SFL) of Canada a contract to develop the NorSat Expertise Demonstrator (TD) microsatellite. With a main mission of testing out new applied sciences in house, NorSat-TD will validate payloads and ideas from Norway, the Netherlands, France, and Italy.
SFL, which developed the operational NorSat-1 and -2 microsatellites launched in 2017, in addition to NorSat-Three anticipated to launch in Q2 2021, has been contracted to design and construct the NorSat-TD spacecraft and carry out integration and testing of all techniques and payloads. NorSat-TD has accomplished its closing design overview and been slated for launch in 2022.
Artist’s rendering of NorSat-TD in orbit. (courtesy: House Flight Laboratory (SFL))
“The Norwegian Coastal Administration depends on NorSat-1 and -2 to precisely monitor giant industrial vessels in its territorial waters and past,” mentioned SFL Director, Dr. Robert E. Zee. “NorSat-TD will fly expertise that’s deliberate to reinforce the ship monitoring functionality of Norway with a miniaturized AIS-receiver and goals to increase the expertise obtainable for future missions, together with micropropulsion, exact level positioning and laser-based communications.”
NorSat-1, -2 and -Three had been constructed on SFL’s 15-kg NEMO microsatellite platform, measuring 20x20x40 cm. Because of the further payloads deliberate for NorSat-TD, the demonstration satellite tv for pc can be developed utilizing SFL’s bigger 30x30x40-cm DEFIANT microsatellite bus with a mass of 35 kg.
“You possibly can consider DEFIANT as a NEMO platform that doesn’t require a dispenser,” mentioned Zee.
NorSat-TD represents spectacular technological collaboration amongst European nations. A number of superior or experimental payloads will see their first functions in orbit aboard the microsatellite:
- Fifth Era AIS Receiver – A complicated model of the Automated Identification System (AIS) receivers developed by Kongsberg Seatex of Trondheim, Norway, as main devices for the primary three NorSats, this miniaturized machine with CubeSat kind issue will obtain AIS alerts broadcast by giant industrial maritime vessels. AIS permits the areas and standing of ships to be tracked and monitored. The brand new NorSat-TD receiver may also be used to check the Web of Issues within the Arctic, in response to NOSA.
- Small Communication Energetic Terminal (SmallCAT) – Developed by TNO, the Netherlands Group for Utilized Scientific Analysis, this instrument can also be meant to assist the Norwegian Defence Analysis Institution’s experiments with laser communications between the satellite tv for pc their floor station, a possible gamechanger within the knowledge quantity that’s doable from microsatellites in orbit.
- VHF Information Trade System (VDES) – From House Norway, a complicated communication system that first flew on NorSat-2 has been improved to allow larger bandwidth, extra dependable two-way communications amongst and between satellites, ships, and land. Working collectively, NorSat-2 and NorSat-TD will present better communication capability for ships in Norwegian waters, in response to NOSA.
- Onboard Laser Reflector – A miniaturized laser reflector developed by the Italian INRI SCF analysis laboratory can be used to trace NorSat-TD with ground-based lasers in Norway, France, and Italy.
- Satellite tv for pc Collision Avoidance – House Star, a space-based GPS instrument developed by Fugro can be examined as a extremely correct technique of figuring out a satellite tv for pc’s place in orbit for improved situational consciousness.
- Iodine-Fueled Electrical Propulsion – ThrustMe, a French startup, has developed a brand new thruster designed to vary a satellite tv for pc’s orbit, which can be examined on NorSat-TD. One potential future use of the thruster can be to maneuver a spent satellite tv for pc to a decrease orbit, so it burns up within the Earth’s environment relatively than forsaking house particles.
- NorSat-TD would be the seventh satellite tv for pc developed by SFL for Norway. SFL constructed and built-in the AISSat-1 nanosatellite launched in 2010 to find out if reception of AIS alerts in orbit was possible. AISSat-1 proved so strong that Norway quickly commissioned it as an operational ship-tracking mission. Subsequently, further AISSats had been constructed and launched and a brand new line of upper capability microsatellites, the NorSats, had been developed.
“NOSA is glad to be working with SFL on this demanding challenge. The pliability of SFL and their micro-satellite platforms have met the numerous and demanding challenges of this multi-mission expertise demonstrator. We really feel that this mission is once more pushing the envelope for what we’re ready accomplish with these fast-paced low footprint tasks,” mentioned NorSat-TD Challenge Supervisor, Tyler Jones.
SFL is a novel microspace supplier that gives a whole suite of nano-, micro- and small satellites – together with high-performance, low-cost CubeSats – that fulfill the wants of a broad vary of mission sorts from Three to 500 kilograms. Courting from 1998, SFL’s heritage of on-orbit successes contains 65 distinct missions associated to Earth commentary, atmospheric monitoring, ship monitoring, communication, radio frequency (RF) geolocation, expertise demonstration, house astronomy, photo voltaic physics, house plasma, and different scientific analysis.
In its 23-year historical past, SFL has developed CubeSats, nanosatellites, and microsatellites which have achieved greater than 135 cumulative years of operation in orbit. These microspace missions have included SFL’s trusted angle management and, in some circumstances, formation-flying capabilities. Different core SFL-developed parts embody modular (scalable) energy techniques, onboard radios, flight computer systems, and management software program.
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