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SERPENS reaches the ISS

Nanosatellite SERPENS: arrival at the International Space Station

AEBNanosatellite SERPENS: arrival at the International Space StationAEB

On August 24, 2015, the nanosatellite SERPENS, developed by the Brazilian Space Agency (AEB) in partnership with federal universities and research institutes, arrived at the International Space Station (ISS), which orbits the Earth at an altitude of 370 kilometers. The satellite, which cost R$800,000, had been coupled to the Japanese HTV5 capsule and launched into space from the city of Tsukuba, Japan, five days earlier (August 19). The next step was to put SERPENS into orbit, in September 2015. The tiny satellite – measuring just 10 x 10 x 30 centimeters – is part of the SERPENS project, funded by AEB. The acronym in Portuguese stands for Space System for Research and Experiments Using Nanosatellites. The device will test basic concepts used during space missions; it will receive, store, and retransmit messages by means of a ham radio communication system. The system will enable SERPENS to exchange messages with other stations around the world. This means that data stored by the satellite will be recoverable at many locations worldwide – not just by the universities involved, but by anyone with access to ham radio stations.