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Wednesday, October 13, 2004

50 'Nanosats' for Sputnik's 50th Anniversary
Europe will launch 50 ultra-small satellites in 2007 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Sputnik, the first artificial satellite of the Earth launched in October 1957. BBC News Online writes that each nanosatellite will weigh only about 1 kilogram and represent a single nation. Arianespace will launch all 50 of the nanosats in a single payload.

The nanosats will stay in orbit for about 2 years and will perform experiments chosen and designed by each individual country. For the first time in history, 50 different countries will have the opportunity to do space research, and probably at little cost.

In the future, similar clusters of nanosats could be launched for collaborative missions, acting as groups and having a single goal. Imagine today a swarm of a thousand of nanosatellites checking Mount St. Helens! Read more for selected excerpts and pointers to this future but historic mission.
:: posted by Roland Piquepaille, 1:45 PM Comments (0)
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