Expleo has completed the Assembly Integration & Test (AIT) milestone for the payload of two smallsat projects.
With the completion of the AIT phase, the payload subsystems are qualified, validated and made ready for integration into their respective satellite systems, marking a significant step toward the realization of the two missions and their anticipated launches in early 2023.
The two smallsat programs which Expleo is supporting are:
- ENSO (Expleo Nanosatellite for Solar-irradiance Observations) – The Expleo-led nanosatellite is part of an R&D program to measure solar radiation and monitor the ionosphere. The collected data will be used to understand the effects of solar activity on critical satellite and telecommunication systems such as those used in aviation.
- HydroSat – Working with the State of Djibouti and Montpellier University Space Center, Expleo is developing the payload of a nanosatellite to collect data from local climatological stations spread across the territory, such as temperature, rainfall, river depth and hydrometry across the country. With the new nanosatellite, Djibouti can better track environmental changes across the country.
Nanosatellites are a smaller form of smallsat that are a major aspect of the growing New Space movement, capable of forming cost-effective satellite networks for applications such as connectivity, IoT, Earth Observation (EO) and on-orbit demos. The Expleo-developed satellites measure 10x10x10cm, weighs around 1kg. and are small enough to be held comfortably in one hand.
The ENSO and HydroSat projects will now start working towards the AIT at the satellite-system level and the final confirmation of their launch dates.
Frédérique Rebout, Senior Alliances & Partnerships Director for Defence & Space at Expleo, said, “As we look to solve the various environmental and business challenges on our planet, it’s outside our atmosphere where we can find the solutions. NewSpace innovations, such as nanosatellites, are democratising the benefits of space technology, opening up new possibilities for many more people. Expleo’s engineering and technology expertise is supporting this revolution and we are looking forward with pride to seeing HydroSat and ENSO take to orbit soon.”