The first communication between the ground station and the CubeSat was established yesterday. We fired through a forest, 2 buildings and into the clean room were the satellite is under testing. Something like 300 meters away. Have a look at the nice beacon emission:
Sorry for the recent lack of news. We were busy: after all the stress tests, the secondary mirror gave signs of cracking. We had to expertise it, and understand where it was coming from.
Conclusion, we have now a brand new coating: Silver (we are rich). Thanks to Optics Fichou for saving us!
Here is new version of M2, next to the old. Next task is the integration of the telescope into the flight model.
By the way, we have a cool new picture of the satellite (the payload is not yet inside):
To provide the required 5W of electrical power, the PicSat satellite encompass 2 deployable solar panels of 2U length each. It gives a total of 50cmx10cm of surface exposed to the Sun.
Because the solar panels deploy on two opposite sides (for redundancy), the VHF/UHF antennas deploy on the other two faces. They are on opposite edges to maximise transmission, and decrease the risk of interference.
A radio interview (in French) of the PI :
Not particularly accurate, but mostly true…
An interesting Master Thesis at MIT:
For now, we are cheaper (the baseline cost of PicSat is around 1.6m€). Let’s see how it goes…
An interesting paper from the BBC on shipping containers:
I cannot stop seeing similarities with CubeSats