Chennai: To maximize the learning experience of the students, Directors Dr.Marie Johnson and Dr.Mariazeena Johnson have taken up an initiative on space research to design and develop a nanosatellite with the mission of pollution monitoring. A team of students and faculty members from different discipline have worked under the guidance of scientists from the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) to develop SATHYABAMASAT. The work aims at providing real-time design and development experience of compact space systems to the students.
The SATHYABAMASAT nanosatellite’s mission objective is to monitor the concentration of green house gases present in the atmosphere, obtain the pollution model for India through the data collected using spectrometer payload, interpret the acquired data and represent the concentration of green house gases in PPM. The spectrometer operates in the near infrared band 900 nm to 1700 nm and features a surface resolution of approximately 1.5 km when deployed in Low Earth Orbit (LEO).
The Satellite is a standard 2U size satellite, with payload pointing Nadir to capture data about the composition of green house gases. The satellite consists of six subsystems namely Structure and Thermal subsystem, Attitude determination and control system, Electrical power system, On-board computer, Communication system and Payload. The design of the satellite is mostly indigenous and some space grade, off the shelf components with flight heritage has been used.
CA Prabhakar, Project Director (Cartosat 3A & 3B projects) at ISRO’s Satellite Centre, received the satellite from the university chancellor Jeppiaar at a function held in the university on 30th April 2016.
SPeaking to reporters, Prabhakar said Sathyabamasat would be launched along with Cartosat 2C satellite in the PSLV C34 mission in June this year.
“They (Sathyabama University) are not trying to reinvent the wheel, but trying to do something new. They have fixed a spectrometer in the satellite, which will detect different green-house gases and their quantities in the atmosphere,” he said.
Earlier in his special address, Prabhakar said that there were three threats in the world — terrorism, global warming and energy crisis.
“Global warming will affect a lot of people with change in weather. Sathyabamasat has taken a small step and a giant leap in global warming as the satellite can monitor green-house gases. So, you will know the sources of emission and curb it,” he added.
Jeppiaar said that their university signed an MoU with ISRO six years ago to develop the satellite.
“On the one hand students pursued their studies in the university and on the other they developed the satellite with help of faculty,” he said.
Mariazeena Johnson, Director of Sathyabama University, said that the aim of the satellite project was to provide real time design and development experience of compact space systems to students.
B Sheela Rani, mission management in-charge of the satellite and vice-chancellor of the university, said that their institution started developing the 2-kg nanosatellite six years ago, which would monitor the concentration of greenhouse gases present in the atmosphere, obtain the pollution model for India through the data collected using spectrometer, interpret the acquired data and represent the concentration of greenhouse gases.
“ISRO will be the primary agency to use the satellite data. Later, it will be shared with other agencies like Indian Meteorological Department for interpretation. Once the life span of the satellite gets over it can be used for amateur radio communication,” she said.
The university had set up an exclusive centre for space technology with various facilities, including ground station, in its campus to monitor all parameters of the satellite and to acquire the data after the launch of the satellite.
The spectrometer in the satellite operates in the near infrared band 900 nano-metre to 1700 nano-metre and features a surface resolution of about 1.5 kilometres when deployed in a Low Earth Orbit.