Microchip Technology Inc. announced that a volunteer team of Microchip engineers spent nearly four years working on nights and weekends to develop the ARISSat-1 amateur satellite. Their hard work will come to fruition tomorrow when the crew of the International Space Station (ISS) is scheduled deployed the satellite during a spacewalk.
ARISSat-1 is the prototype test flight for a proposed series of educational satellites being developed in a partnership with the Radio Amateur Satellite Corp. (AMSAT), the NASA Office of Education ISS National Lab Project, the Amateur Radio on ISS (ARISS) working group and RSC-Energia. It will perform the following primary functions:
· Two-way communication via UHF uplink and VHF downlink, for use by ham radio operators
· Visuals of space from four cameras
· Recharging of the satellite's battery using solar panels, enabling operation for months
· Transmission of audio greetings in many languages, for reception via simple radios or scanners
· Telemetry transmissions with updates on the health of the satellite
· House an experiment from Russia's Kursk University that measures atmospheric pressure