Ground Station Opens to Track Satellite Built by AURAK Students
A ground station that will track as well as communicate with a satellite built by American University of Ras Al Khaimah (AURAK) students has actually opened on the University's campus.
The ground station can communicating with satellites in orbit by sending commands as well as receiving telemetry, images and also science data back from them.
The satellite project is a collaboration in between the UAE Space Agency, AURAK and also Khalifa College of Science and also Technology (KUST).
Amongst those present at the opening of the ground terminal were AURAK's President, Professor Hassan Hamdan Al Alkim, Senior Vice President and also Provost, Prof. Stephen Wilhite, Acting Vice President of Operational Excellence and Financial Management, Dr. Mohammed Saqr Al Zaabi, and Interim Dean of the School of Engineering, Dr. Hamed Assaf.
" The ground station was completely constructed by AURAK engineers and also students. The station will be utilized to communicate with MeznSat, the university's initial nanosatellite. The ground station will likewise be utilized by faculty and also students to track as well as receive information from various other satellites," stated Dr. Abdul-Halim Jallad, Director and Assistant Professor, Center of Information, Communication and Networking Education and also Innovation (ICONET).
" The opening of the AURAK Satellite Ground Station is another achieved milestone on the path of AURAK ending up being a major hub in the location of space engineering in the UAE as well as the region. With the enhancement of the satellite ground station, the space lab at AURAK is now fully equipped with all major resources required to construct and also operate nanosatellites which additionally consists of an ISO 7 cleanroom and various other satellite ground support equipment," Dr. Jallad included.
The satellite is scheduled for launch on a Soyuz-2 rocket from Russia in September 2020. When the satellite remains in orbit, students will certainly process and analyze the data from the newly opened up ground terminal on the AURAK campus.
" I'm really proud of what our team and students, led by Dr. Jallad, have accomplished up until now. It's an achievement for the country, not just for the university or the Emirate, and also it demonstrates how a lot this country, the United Arab Emirates, has progressed in this field, education," Professor Hassan said. "And currently with the government emphasis on space, not just has an astronaut been sent into space, yet there is likewise a satellite 100% made in the UAE that is going to go into space."
The MeznSat Nano-satellite is designed to detect greenhouse gas concentrations from orbit. Making use of a visible camera along with a shortwave infrared spectrometer, it will certainly gauge the abundance and also distribution of methane as well as carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. It will likewise supply information on the concentration of nutrients in the coastal waters of the Arabian Gulf. This will certainly permit much more exact predictions of algal blooms and support the timely application of precautionary measures.
MeznSat is the initial student-built scientific satellite in the UAE. The project focuses on providing the UAE space industry with certified well-trained graduates through hands-on experience, while at the same time opening up possibilities for advanced space-oriented research relevant to the UAE.