- Press Release
- Jan 29, 2023
SpaceDev Spacecraft (CHIPS) Performing Well in Orbit
SpaceDev today announced that the Cosmic Hot Interstellar
Plasma Spectrometer (CHIPS) microsatellite is performing well in orbit.
The satellite was launched at 4:45 p.m. PST on January 12 from Vandenberg
Air Force Base. The first contact with the satellite was made on its first
pass over the University of California at Berkeley (UCB) ground station at
6:20 p.m. PST, approximately 95 minutes after its launch. At the time of this
release, the newly developed SpaceDev avionics, software, and power systems
all appear to be operating nominally.
The flight computer and software have correctly handled commands and
performed File Transfer Protocols (FTP) containing satellite status and health
data using our TCP/IP communications and secure link over the Internet.
“Successful FTP transfers have been performed,” said Simon Dawson, mission
operations manager for SpaceDev. “And all operational uplink and downlink
data rates have been tested and verified.”
The satellite is being operated from the Mission Control Center (MCC)
located at SpaceDev’s corporate headquarters in Poway, CA along with its
network of ground stations at UCB, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center’s Wallops
Flight Facility in Virginia, and Adelaide, Australia.
“We’ve maintained a power positive condition at all times and had very
successful communications over the Internet,” said Jeff Janicik, flight
systems director for SpaceDev. “The operation team’s next challenge is to
begin operating the attitude control system and achieve 3-axis stabilization
of the spacecraft. Shortly thereafter, the SpaceDev/UCB team will be prepared
to begin instrument operations.”
“I’m very pleased with the initial success of this mission and I want to
thank the entire CHIPSat team for all of the hard work that they’ve put in on
this microsatellite project that could help revolutionize the space industry,
Dr. Mark Hurwitz at UCB for competitively selecting SpaceDev, and NASA for
helping us find a launch for CHIPSat and for approving what may be the first
in a series of revolutionary microsatellites,” said Jim Benson, chairman and
chief executive officer of SpaceDev.
SpaceDev had overall responsibility for the design, assembly, integration
and testing of the CHIPSat microsatellite as well as designing the entire
ground segment and establishing a Mission Control Center at SpaceDev to test
and operate the satellite.
SpaceDev (OTC Bulletin Board: SPDV) creates and sells affordable and
innovative space products and solutions to government and commercial
enterprises. SpaceDev products and solutions include the design, manufacture,
marketing and operation of sophisticated micro and nano satellites, hybrid
rocket-based orbital Maneuvering and orbital Transfer Vehicles (MTVs) as well
as safe sub-orbital and orbital hybrid rocket-based propulsion systems.
SpaceDev has been awarded contracts from NASA, National Reconnaissance
Organization (NRO), Boeing, Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), California Space
Authority (CSA) Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) and several commercial
customers. SpaceDev is also developing commercial hybrid rocket motors and
small high performance space vehicles and subsystems. For more information,
visit www.spacedev.com .
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