What is Kitsat?
This is the new definition of fun: building a satellite together with a team and using it just like the satellites orbiting Earth.
Kitsat is an educational satellite based on the popular CubeSat format, which is used by hundreds of universities around the world. It is the core of the New Space movement, that is changing the way we access space. New space technology, which is transforming our daily lives.
Understanding this technology is vital for the future and experimenting with it may help the next generation in future challenges. Everything from fighting climate change to creating new space-based services, which improve quality of life here on Earth.
Simple and inexpensive
KitSat has all functioning satellite subsystems, such as an Electrical Power System (EPS) charging from solar panels or USB connector, Attitude Determination System (ADS), On-Board Computer (OBC) as the central information processing unit, radio module for telecommanding and telemetry, and payload instruments for autonomous observation. Kitsats main computer is based on a 32-bit ARM micro-architecture, similar to modern mobile phones. It has 512 KB flash memory, which is more than enough for normal use.
The Kitsat has a full suite of sensors, including accelerometers, gyroscopes, GPS, temperature and air pressure. Additionally it also has an air quality sensor, to measure the quality of life.
The satellite has also a camera that can be used also for near infra red observations – making simple remote sensing demonstrations also possible.
The radio transreceiver (as it is delivered) can be used without a radio license. The output power can be increased for longer distance operations (up to 1500 km), but then the operator must have a radio amateur license.
Kitsat is delivered with a ground segment unit for realistic satellite operations simulation.
The satellite has heritage from Aalto Satellites and the Suomi100 satellite, and a prototype of the satellite was sent up to the stratosphere with a weather balloon in November 2017.
This atmospheric experiment was virtually as a 'proof of implementation' for our product concept.
Start your own space program with Kitsat
Consisting of a fully functional, inexpensive satellite, small ground station and an educational package, which can be also used remotely for E-learning, the Kitsat system can be used in all STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) subjects. It is a multipurpose tool with everything from simple hands-on space technology-learning to machine learning experiments.
The satellite is not spaceworthy, but has been tested on a stratospheric flight. This near-space experience is the most challenging one of the proposed space mission simulation concepts included in the Kitsat educational package.
The idea comes from the educational program of the Suomi 100 satellite project. The most popular part of it was the Space Truck, a small space-themed science center that was built inside an exhibition truck. During its tour around Finland in 2017, school children and other visitors built a rough copy of the satellite – and this activity turned out to be extremely popular and fun. Therefore after the tour, the idea was to develop the satellite further, spiced with Finnish space technology knowledge.
As science and technology is these days– and increasingly in the future - teamwork, the educational activities around Kitsat are highlighting teams and their shared responsibilities.
Kitsat is currently being tested (also by Heureka Science Center) and it will be officially released later in 2019.
The concept has already won the Quality Innovation Prize 2018 by the Finnish Quality Association and it has been selected for the world finals. The Kitsat team also won the World Challenge Finland 2018 Hackathon and was awarded with a free flight to the International Space Station.
In February 2019 Kitsat was selected to join the European Space Agency Business Incubation Center.