University of Texas at Austin

Thursday, February 17, 2011

FASTRAC satellites on track

fastracimageTwo satellites designed and built by students at the Cockrell School of Engineering have passed two major milestones since their launch Nov. 19 from the Kodiak Launch Complex in Alaska.

The 60-plus pound satellites, named Emma and Sara Lily, survived orbit during the most extreme hot conditions they will face in space — orbiting for hours in front of the sun — and in the coldest conditions, being directly behind the Earth’s shadow.

“We wanted to make sure the satellites could live through that and the fact that they did and seem to be working is a good sign that they will last a long time in space,” said aerospace engineering Professor Glenn Lightsey, who served as faculty adviser to students working on the project, known as FASTRAC.

Read more at Animation Details How Student-developed Satellites Work in Space.

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