Following the design, development and test of a space-qualified nanosatellite (BRITE Austria/TUGSAT-1), already funded under ASAP 3 and ASAP 4, this new project proposed for ASAP 5 (and eventually for the follow-up program) is concerned with the launch of BRITE Austria/TUGSAT-1 (in late 2008 or at the beginning of 2009), ground station operations and maintenance in Graz, operations of up to four spacecraft as well as retrieval and preprocessing of the scientific and housekeeping data.
This way, a complete space mission will be carried out bringing the technology readiness level from a completed flight model to a flight proven system. With a second nearly identical satellite procured by University of Vienna and two more potential Canadian satellites a BRITE-Constellation of up to four satellites is possible.
This constellation will survey the sky, measuring the brightness and temperature variations of the brightest stars on timescales ranging from hours to months. The constellation offers an order-of-magnitude improvement in science return over a single nanosatellite, since it allows the use of two different filters in different satellites and provides much better time and sky coverage.
The BRITE-Constellation will be the first network of nanosatellites exclusively devoted to a fundamental problem in astrophysics and will provide experience for future coordinated satellite networks.
Graz University of Technology, Institute for Communication Networks and Satellite Communications
- University of Vienna Institute for Astronomy
- Vienna University of Technology Institute of Communications and Radio Frequency Engineering Radio Frequency Engineering Group
- University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies, Spaceflight Laboratory
- University of British Columbia Department for Physics and Astronomy Vancouver, Canada
- University of Montreal Département de physique
Graz University of Technology
Institute for Communication Networks and Satellite Communications (IKS)
Univ.-Prof.Dipl.-Ing.Dr. Otto Koudelka