New Space and Tech

KickSat’s Radio Beacon Heard – Sprites to be Deployed Soon

By Marc Boucher
April 21, 2014
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KickSat’s Radio Beacon Heard – Sprites to be Deployed Soon
KickSat Sprite spacecraft.

The crowdfunded KickSat project which raised over $74,000, more than double its intended goal, has received several radio signals from the KickSat CubeSat launcher after its release from the SpaceX Dragon during its launch last Friday.
The KickSat CubeSat launcher contains 104 Spite spacecraft each with its own antenna, radio, solar cells, microcontroller, capacitors and mission. They will be deployed at intervals on a timer starting at 4:00 PM EDT (20:00 GMT) on May 4th, 16 days after the launch which will give the KickSat CubeSat enough time to complete its system checks.

Developed by Zac Manchester, a graduate student in Aerospace Engineering at Cornell University, the research project is parts of Zac’s “Big Picture” goal of helping to reduce the cost of spaceflight.

You can track KickSat through either NASA’s Interactive Satellite Viewer or N2YO which will tell you when it will be overhead where you are. If you want to get more involved and receive updates you can join the KickSat mailing list.

You can learn more about the Sprite spacecraft from the Space Systems Design Studio, part of the Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Cornell University.

SpaceRef co-founder, entrepreneur, writer, podcaster, nature lover and deep thinker.