Rapid development of technology and increasing awareness of global challenges have increased the need for lean and agile space missions, and calls for a new generation of engineers to design them. Miniaturization of the sensor technology and electronics has decreased the weight of a satellite, which at the same time has brought launch prices to the reach of educational institutes and smaller countries.
A satellite project is an excellent source of motivation for learning and collaboration, the goal is clear to everybody. Many students wish to contribute to a real space project and now it is possible. When combining this motivation with a project based teaching and high quality lecture courses, the learning outcome is usually very good or excellent.
The CubeSat project concept rhymes also well with modern university teaching trends that attempt to integrate all the key components of professional expertise to comprehensive learning experience. Completion of the satellite demonstrates the high level of education at the Aalto University. The new generation of nanosatellites involves technological developments, the results of which can also be used in other fields.
The Aalto University satellite projects ensure that students will continue to work with the right challenges and the latest technology in the future. Designing instruments for use in highly demanding conditions helps us create innovations and teaches us to appreciate and build quality.
The Suomi 100 satellite is Aalto University’s 3rd CubeSat in space. The 1U satellite has two payloads, a visible light camera and an own designed and built radio instrument. The science goal of the satellite is to study space weather phenomena near the Earth, especially auroras.
Aalto-3: Open Source Student Satellite Project
The Aalto-3 is the third member of the Aalto Satellites family. It is a CubeSat with a size of 1U. The goal of the Aalto-3 is to provide an Open Source satellite for everyone, which has been demonstrated to work and endure in the harsh space environment.
Foresail-1 is a satellite mission from the Finnish Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Space hosting two payloads - the particle telescope (PATE) from the University of Turku and a deorbiting plasma brake device from the Finnish meteorological institute. The spacecraft is designed and built at Aalto University.