"SNAP-1: The UK’s First Nanosatellite"

Abstract:

 The UK’s first nanosatellite: SNAP-1, designed and built by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. (SSTL) and Surrey Space Centre staff in less than a year, is due for launch in June 2000. It is a 6.5 kg spacecraft with advanced, UK-developed, GPS navigation, computing, propulsion and attitude control technologies. Its primary payload is a machine vision system (MVS) capable of inspecting other spacecraft. SNAP-1 will use its propulsion, navigation and inter-satellite link systems to rendezvous with another Surrey-built satellite, Tsinghua-1, leading the way to the development of the micro/nano-satellite constellations that will revolutionise space exploration in the 21st Century. SNAP-1 will also demonstrate the feasibility of a standardised modular nanosatellite bus; provide a test-bed for novel micro-electronic and miniature mechanical technologies; as well as providing a vehicle for the education and training of students in spacecraft engineering at undergraduate and post-graduate level. This lecture will describe the history, development and future of the SNAP project.