TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan is joining hands with Japan to develop a mini satellite as a validation platform for optical sensor technologies, with the launch slated for mid-2022.
Dubbed the 6U Fast Validation CubeSat (6U快速飛試立方衛星), the satellite will measure 36.6 centimeters long, 22.6 cm wide, and 10 cm deep. The University of Tokyo's Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics will design it, fitting it with optical remote sensors and mechanical systems developed by Taiwan’s National Space Organization (NSPO), reported CNA.
Not only will the device test the optical technologies but it will also carry out a range of tasks, from capturing images of the Earth to disaster monitoring. The optical sensor technologies are the core of the third phase of Taiwan’s intelligent satellite initiative, said Yu Shiann-jen (余憲政), deputy director-general of the NSPO.
The merits of CubeSats are that they are standardized and cost-effective, ideal for scientific research. The satellite will be sent to the International Space Station in 2022 by Japanese companies Edge Lab and Space BD before being deployed into orbit at an altitude of 380-420 kilometers, according to the NSPO.
The project will be led by Shinichi Nakasuka (中須賀真一), a professor at the University of Tokyo's Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, who has years of experience in CubeSat development. He has lent his expertise to 10 such satellites that are currently operating in space.