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160315: 5 past 5 was BIP for AAUSAT5

Today at approx 5 past 5 CET AAUSAT5 burned up in the atmosphere

´´´Burn In Peace´´´

It has been a long and good mission.

We are now looking forward to AAUSAT4 launch in late April 2016

26. Oct - Two-way communication with AAUSAT5 :-)

Our MCC GUI showing communication 21. Oct

We are happy to announce that we have two-way communication with AAUSAT5. We can uplink commands and decode the received answers. So one more milestone has been achieved.

It is no secret that we at the launch day had problems coming into contact with AAUSAT5. Not all problems are solved but we do have a running space operation now.

We do uplink commands from Aalborg and receive answers via Mike Rupprecht Germany(DK3WN). We have shipped a ground station to him and due to our design we can easily have uplink at one physical location and downlink another place.

There are hopefully many more milestones to reach in the future - like

  • optimized ground station in Aalborg
  • getting more data down
  • analyze system behaviour up in space

And more to come.

Today we have carried out some tuning at the radio up in space to optimize downlink by ...

  • lowering bitrate
  • adjusting filters and AFC
  • increase TX power in space

as usual stay tuned - we will do web update more frequently in the future.

16. Oct - More beacons

The first beacon received by Mike has been followed by several more. We are still working on establishing more stable link and things seems to progress.

We hope to have more news in the coming week.

So LEOP is ongoing and progressing.

10. Oct - Our external crew members

We are so lucky that we have people around in Europe that helps us a lot. Without them there would not have been any descent mission just now.

They are:

  • Mike Rupprecht DK3WN (Germany)
  • Lars Mehnen OE3HMW (Austria)
  • Jan Van Gils PE0SAT (The Netherlands)
  • Lars-Christian Hauer DJ3BO (Germany)

The mission is ongoing - stay tuned.

8. Oct: CSP/Data Beacon decoded

First beacon decoded from 20151006 20:12 from DK3WN.

As you may know AAUSAT5 sends two kinds of beacon

  • Morse(cw) beacon which only states battery voltage and inside temperature
  • Data/CSP beacon

Friendly HAM people around the world has from the start been able to receive and decode our Morse/CW beacon but not the data/CSP beacon.



DK3WNs baseband signal

Mike Rupprecht DK3WN Germany did record a pass on 6. October 22:15 CEST. He send the raw data to us and this evening we manage to decode it :-)

Tech info: Wav/IQ files from Mike received and then just replay in our GND and see the result :-)

We are very grateful for all the help we get. Thanks Mike.

So as you can see spacecraft is working ok.

We will continue working on improved connectivity to AAUSAT5.

stay tuned.

The baseband signal:

Status Wednesday 7. October HAM help

Mike Rupprecht DK3WN and Lars-Christian Hauer DJ3BO (both from Germany) has reported Morse beacon this evening.

AAUSAT5 seems ok: 8.0V on batteries and 19-20C indoor :-)

Again thanks for this invaluable help

We will try the coming days to decode IQ sampled signal from Mike and hope to get a data beacon decoded where there is lot more of information.

stay tuned

Status Wednesday 7. October

The good news is AAUSAT5 is alive and transmit beacons.

It has been heard many times in Europe as well in Brasil.

Power is good onboard (8.0V) and the temperature is stable around 20C.

We have not yet been able to receive any decodeable information in Aalborg.

This is in line with observations from Radio Amateurs around the world: AAUSAT5 is in good shape but the communication link is weak.

So we have a living spacecraft and hope to come in real contact the in the near future.

Tuesday morning

Update later today - we have lectures :-)

AAUSAT5 and GOMX-3 leaving ISS

Courtesy of Nanoracks/NASA

AAUSAT5 leaving ISS Monday 4. Oct 16:05 CEST

2200 More beacons from dk3wn

Mike has send us an image showing that AAUSAT5 is working and emitting beacons with the predicted interval. So we are very confident that AAUSAT5 i having a nice flight :-)

Multiple beacons received from dk3wn

2115 AAUSAT CW beacon heard in Germany


Mike (DK3WN in Germany) has send us the first decodeable beacon received during the 20== CEST time pass. We are happy.

7.9V on batteries 21C inside temperature so AAUSAT5 is alive

We will return within 25 min

First bike from Mike 7.9V and 21Centigrade

Status 2100 CEST

We did see the deployment today live from ISS :-)

A good event.

But we have not yet confirmed two way communication. We have reports from Japan and Brazil that they have heard our baby so it seems there is life up there.

We are waiting on the first good pass over Aalborg 2130.

We will come back with more news.

AAUSAT5 and GOMX-3 ejected from ISS


The livestream will open 18:00 danish time. Follow us in lab :-)



We welcome everybody to come and join our launch event for AAUSAT5.

At Fibigerstræde 15 (AAUs main cantina)
15:20 Doors open
15:40 Welcome, Dr Eskild Holm Nielsen, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Science, Aalborg University 
15:45 Introduction to AAUSAT5 and GomX-3 deployment from the ISS, Jens Schiemann, ESA ISS operations

15:55 AAUSAT5 and GomX-3 deployment: live link  from the ISS, commented by Andreas Mogensen, ESA astronaut

16:05 The AAUSAT5 mission, Prof Jens Frederik Dalsgaard Nielsen 
16:15 The GomX-3 mission, Lars Alminde, Chief Sales Officer, GomSpace
16:25 CubeSats at ESA, a new path for Education and Technology, Hugo Marée, Head of ESA Education and Knowledge Management Office, and Roger Walker, ESA Technology CubeSats Manager
16:40 Lecture: Living and working on the ISS, Andreas Mogensen
17:40 AAUSAT5 and GomX-3: what next?  Prof Jens Frederik Dalsgaard Nielsen, and Kim Toft Hansen, GomX-3 Project Manager, GomSpace
17:50 Q&A & interviews

18:00 AAUSAT5 goes active and starts emitting beacon

18:30 End of event at Fibigerstræde 15

At Fredrik Bajersvej 7C in our SpaceLab we have our local Houston Control Room

You are welcome to join us (300m walk from Fibigerstræde 15)

18:28 First pass to be received by our ground station in Austria 


Next pass at:
20:04 AAU
20:05 Austria 

Launch Info

We hope to be deployed from ISS some time between 5 and 8 October

Viewable passes (based on ISS TLE) with elevation greater than 10 degress will be something like: ( a pass will last less than 10 minuttes)

So ... it seems that - depending of time of ejection from ISS - be lot of time to listen to AAUSAT5 'before we will see it in Aalborg. We really hope that you will help us.

NB NB : Time on the images below is in UTC so add 2 hours to get european/danish time (CEST)

AAU passes the first days

Add to 2 hours to get european time (its UTC time)

AAU passes

TUW (Austria) passes the first days

Add to 2 hours to get european time (its UTC time)

TUW(Austria) passes

17. Sep Andreas Mogensen talking about AAUSAT5

Andreas talking about AAUSAT5.

We are very honoured that Andreas Mogensen took time at ISS to give a presentation of AAUSAT5.

You can find the video here

16. Sep HRV-5 goin down

JAXA has announced that our transport vehicle to ISS (HTV-5) now has left ISS and will reentry atmosphere and burn up.

11. Sep 23:30 - Andreas on way home


10. Sep - Space Day 2015

Today one of are students - Amalie - is giving a presentation at SpaceDay 2015 in Industrien Hus Copenhagen.

6. Sep - Ejection of AAUSAT5 now set for October.

Cubesats ejected from ISS (credit NASA)

Latest news from ESA (see here) now sets ejection of AAUSAT5 from ISS to take place in October. Andreas Mogensen wil be back on solid ground at that time so another ISS astronaut will take care of the ejection.

4. Sep - Launch from ISS.

Many people are asking when are you(AAUSAT5) going to be set free from ISS.

Our answer is: as fast as possible. There is at present no fixed date mainly due to the shorten of Andreas visit to ISS with two days.

So you have to wait, as we do, until we get more information.

Stay tuned

4. Sep - Become an engineer

Do you know that six of the nine people at the Space Station just now has a degree as engineer :-)

4. Sep - Andreas at ISS 12:28 CEST - gossip

Andreas safe at ISS

At this moment he got the news his sister is at hospital giving birth to a child :-)

So two historic moments for Andreas today :-)

4. Sep - A few pictures from the docking

Approaching ISS

A few snapshoot from our screen today :-)

The Soyuz capsule and ISS

The Soyuz vehicle firing thrusters


4. Sep Follow docking at ISS live

Docking approx 09:42 Friday morning

Location 09:05 - 37 min before docking

3. Sep Soyuz avoiding old japanese rocket booster

The Soyuz capsule on way to ISS with Andreas had to do high accuracy manouvering earky this morning (05:40 GMT) to avoid collision with an old (from 1989) japanese third stage rocket booster. But still on way to ISS :-)

See here

Follow the ISS and Soyuz capsule

Here you can - on a world map - follow ISS and the Soyuz capsule with Andreas Mogensen

2. Sep Andreas is up in space today :-)

Links to the launch and the launch party in our lab:

Livestream from the AAU Student Space laboratory

We will be livestreaming from the AAU Student Space laboratory during the launching of Andreas Mogensen. So if you can't physically join us in the laboratory you can instead watch via our YouTube livestream.

The livestream will start at 6:05, but is however subject to change. We hope you will either join us in our laboratory or watch our livestream :)

Launch changes

Lift off is still 2. Sep 06:37 danish summertime(CEST) but it has been announced that it will take two days to reach ISS and not six hours.

Launch event at AAU 2. September

The Soyuz capsule

06:34 is lift off for Andreas Mogensen and the two others heading ISS.

We know it's very early in the morning but we will have an open launch event at our premises.

We can offer you a nice morning with direct streaming, coffee and morning bread so feel free to come :-)

So please join us at Fredrik Bajersvej 7C C4-109: there will be signs outside.

  • 06:00 coffee and morning bread when we are waiting (
  • 06:37 lift off
  • 06:xx All engines off and in orbit
  • we are all happy

It has today 26. Aug been announced that it will two days to reach ISS so no l(a)unch event at AAU.

In addition to that we hope that Dr Piero Galeone, ESA, will give a lecture or speach about ESA and opportunities for young engineers

Looking forward to see you all.

Aug 25. ESA has launched an AAUSAT5 video

We are proud to present ESA' video about AAUSAT5. Many thanks from Aalborg team.

(click image to see video)

You can also find more at ESAs Facebook pages

Aug. 25 Waiting on launch of Andreas Mogensen

Andreas' mission shield.

The mission shield.

Andreas Mogensen will travel to ISS 2. September 06:34 CEST and will arrive approx 6 hours later at 12:30.

Come and join our launch event at AAU. More info will follow

Aug 24. Docking

NASA TV has live video from docking

stay tuned

Aug. 20 Next steps

We are now all waiting on docking of the HTV-5 cargo module on Monday.

After that the Souyz launch with ESA astronaut Andreas Mogensen from Denmark is the next very important step.

We will have a launch event at Aalborg University Sep 2. 06:35 (launch time)

Aug. 19 Video of launch

See from approx 1 hour

Aug. 19 16:15 Press release from JAXA

HTV-5 /AAUSAT5 on way U(/courtesy JAXA)

Launch Success of H-II Transfer Vehicle "KOUNOTORI5" (HTV5) by H-IIB Launch Vehicle No. 5

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency launched the H-IIB Launch Vehicle No.5 (H-IIB F5) with the KOUNOTORI5 (HTV5, a cargo transfer vehicle to the International Space Station) onboard at 8:50:49 p.m. on August 19 (Wed.) 2015 (Japan Standard Time, JST) from the Tanegashima Space Center.

The launch vehicle flew smoothly, and, at about 14 minutes and 54 seconds after liftoff, the separation of the KOUNOTORI5 was confirmed.

We would like to express our profound appreciation for the cooperation and support of all related personnel and organizations that helped contribute to the successful launch of the H-IIB F5.

At the time of the launch, the weather was fine, a wind speed was 3.5 meters/second from the south-south-east and the temperature was 27.8 degrees Celsius.

H-IIB Launch Vehicle No.5 Flight Sequence (Quick Estimation) Event Actual value (Quick review)*1

  1. Liftoff 0 min. 0 sec.
  2. SRB-A burnout *2 1 min. 49 sec.#
  3. SRB-A 1st pair jettison *3 2 min. 4 sec.
  4. SRB-A 2nd pair jettison *3 2 min. 7 sec.
  5. Payload fairing jettison 3 min. 43 sec.
  6. First stage main engine cutoff (MECO) 5 min. 49 sec.
  7. 1st and 2nd stages separation 5 min. 57 sec.
  8. Second stage engine lock-in (SELI) 6 min. 7 sec.
  9. Second stage engine cutoff (SECO) 14 min. 46 sec.
  10. HTV5 separation 14 min. 54 sec.
  • *1 Quick estimation value prior to the detailed estimation
  • *2 When the combustion chamber pressure becomes 10% against the largest combustion pressure.
  • *3 The definition of SRB-A jettison is the separation of the rear brace.

Aug. 19 14:30 - HTV-5 in orbit

Today we did follow the launch of the HTV-5 live from Japan.

The launch was very successfull and now we are waiting on the docking at ISS the coming days.

Info about ESA astronat Andreas Mogensen

Launch update Aug 19 13:50:49

NASA about launch Latest news (9:25 Danish time) is that launch will take place.

See ESA announcement here

we are looking forward to reach ISS. Next step will be when AAUSAT5 will be put into orbit from ISS. This is scheduled to the beginning of September.

So today cargo transport to ISS.

Launch Aug. 19 13:50 CET - our program for the day

  • 13:00 Presentation of AAUs satellites
  • 13:25 Demonstration of groundstation
  • 13:50 launch direct video from Japan

you can find us at Fredrik Bajersvej 7C-4

Launch now sceduled for Aug 19. 1350 CEST (Dansk sommertid)

 Due to bad weather forecast in Japan, JAXA has decided to postpone launch until Wednesday.

Tanegashima Launch Site Japan

Launch Postponement of H-IIB Launch Vehicle No. 5 with H-II Transfer Vehicle KOUNOTORI5 (HTV5) Onboard

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) decided to postpone the launch of the H-IIB Launch Vehicle No. 5 with the H-II Transfer Vehicle "KOUNOTORI5" (HTV5) onboard from the Tanegashima Space Center, which was scheduled for August 17 (Mon.), 2015 (Japan Standard Time), as unfavorable weather is forecasted. The new launch date is set for 8:50:49 p.m. August 19 (Wed.), 2015 (JST). Please note that the launch date may be delayed further due to weather conditions. JAXA press release

Launch scheduled for August 17. 14:35 CET (danish time)

Latest news from Japan:

Launch Date and Time of H-II Transfer Vehicle "KOUNOTORI5" (HTV5) by H-IIB Launch Vehicle No. 5

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) have postponed the launch of the H-IIB Launch Vehicle No.5 with the H-II Transfer Vehicle "KOUNOTORI5" (HTV5) onboard from the Tanegashima Space Center to August 17 (Mon., Japan Standard Time.) After a weather judgement meeting today, we decided to conduct the

launch at 9:35:54 p.m. on August 17 (Mon.), 2015 (JST).

which is 14:35 in Denmark

Please note that the launch date may be delayed further due to weather conditions.

August 14. Launch delay

Now our space journey are becomming real and as a part of this we have now a delay.

Due to bad weather JAXA has delayed the launch until Monday. Further delay can come.

AAUSAT5 on table for last inspection at ESTEC.

AAUSAT5 is now in the HTV-5 for launch to ISS. We are waiting

HTV-5 is scheduled for Sunday 16. August 13:01 CEt or 15:01 Danish Summertime

You have now reached the official homepage for AAUSAT5.

We are counting down for launch of the HTV-5 cargo module which shall carry us to space.

August 10. Waiting for launch

The HTV launch vehicle before integration on rocket (photo credit: JAXA)

AAUSAT5 is now onboard the japanes HTV-5 cargo unit and launch is scheduled for Aug 16 13:00 UTC.

We hope we will be able to show you the launch here in Aalborg. Stay tuned :-)

July 17. Official launch statement from ESA

Following more than a year of intense effort channelled into a 10 cm box, the first of ESA’s student satellites to be released from the International Space Station has been accepted for launch.

So we are on way to space now :-)

June 2015

We are now close to travel to Nanoracks in Houston for hand over of AAUSAT5. Stay tuned

150323 - Thermal Vacuum test of AAUSAT5 - Day 14-17

Day 17:

Today, we checked out of our hotel, and went to the local super market where we did some beer and chocolate shopping, as the prices were quite lower in The Netherlands compared to Denmark (and even Germany).

Thereafter we headed home, and thus, most of the day was spent in the car during the long drive home to Aalborg. When we finally arrived in Aalborg, the A-team, who helped us unpack the car, greeted us. After a briefing of what we had done during the last days of the test, we each headed home to rest, after a successful but very intense test campaign at ESTEC.

Day 16:

AAUSAT5 in the vacuum chamber as it was opened.

We started by performing a reduced reduced functional test (an RRFT) to see if the satellite operated nominally after the temperature had been raised. Hereafter, we pressurized the chamber, after which we did a functional test to verify that the satellite operated nominally after the pressurization.

After the functional test, we phoned home to our lab in Aalborg, because the team at home had a VIP visitor - Andreas Mogensen, the first Danish astronaut who is to launch our satellite from the International Space Station. We quickly updated him on how the test was going, and showed him the satellite in the vacuum chamber.

After the Skype call, it was time to take the satellite out of the chamber and do a visual inspection of all the sides to see if any damage had happened to the satellite during the test. We observed some dust on the top, as well as some slight bumps on some of the solar cells, which might originate from air bubbles under the cells being released, because of the vacuum.

After the visual inspection, it was time to pack everything up. We then began to write NCR documentation that has to be written whenever a non-conformance occurs during the test. This takes a bit of time, especially if the cause of the NCR is unclear. In many of the cases, the action we would recommend to solve the NCR was to investigate further in Aalborg. After the NCR’s were written, we held a Post Test Review, PTR. Here we went over the test campaign, and went through the NCR’s so that both the ESA-team and us (the AAUSAT5 team) agreed on the actions needed to be taken.

Before we headed back to the hotel, we convinced our supervisors to have one last beer with us at Escape, as a celebration beer of a successful test campaign. It was nice to have a relaxing and less formal time with our supervisors, and you could feel that they, except from working at ESA, were just like anybody else (not surprisingly). Hereafter, we went back to the hotel, where we ordered pizza and enjoyed our last evening in The Netherlands, by playing cards and having a few beers before we went to bed.

Removing the POD-connectors from AAUSAT5 as part of finishing the test procedure.

Day 15:

Wednesday, we almost completed the thermal vacuum test. We charged the batteries up to about 7.8 volts, to see the transition to High Power mode. Hereafter, we had to change the voltage at which the transition happens (this is done in the software) to see if the transition would happen at the new voltage, which it did.

We had thus completed our charge/discharge cycles at the cold temperature. The next step in the test procedure was a stress test of our radio - 1000 beacons had to be requested to see if the radio would overheat. This did not happen however, which we were very happy to see. This meant that we were ready to change the temperature to ambient - the final step before pressurizing the chamber to finish the test. However, raising the temperature is a very time consuming process, so we left the chamber to heat up overnight and headed home to the hotel.

Day 14:

Tuesday was primarily spent waiting for the batteries to discharge. This was because the next part of the test procedure consists of watching the transition from high to low power mode, as well as the transition from low to ultra-low power mode. Since this means we have to discharge about 1,5 volts, it takes a while, even though we speed up the process by turning on all the subsystems. The transition to ULP mode happened a bit sooner than expected, but it turned out that this was because the additional load of having all the subsystems on reduced the voltage of the batteries a lot towards the end of the discharge. Therefore, everything was in fact behaving as it was supposed to, even though it did not look like it at first.

150317 - Thermal Vacuum test of AAUSAT5 - Day 10-13

Day 13:

Monday we began the cold cycle, where the satellite has to operate just above 0 degrees Celsius. We thus started the day by cooling down the satellite, and performing a functional test to see if it worked as intended. Hereafter, the charge cycles began, which however took longer than expected. The day included a lot of waiting time, partly on the vacuum chamber to cool down, but especially because the batteries cannot be charged when they are colder than 0 degrees Celsius, so we had to wait until we were sure the entire battery was above this temperature before we could start charging. Therefore, we only witnessed the initial transition to High power mode before it was time to for us to head back to the hotel.

Day 12:

Sunday, we started out by playing a few board games and worked on our semester projects and courses, trying to catch up on the things we had missed back home during our time here. We had Belgian waffles for lunch since it is one of our teammates birthday this Monday, which we all wanted to celebrate. Hereafter, the time was spent packing, since the A team had to fly back to Aalborg in the evening. We also spent some time discussing the results of the thermal vacuum test, to get a proper handover of the test, so we in the B team were properly prepared for the rest of the campaign. After the A team were driven to the airport, we spent the rest of the night relaxing and looking at some test procedures to be prepared for the upcoming week.

Day 11:

Saturday we went to Amsterdam since most of the team had never been there before. We spent most of the afternoon walking around sightseeing and enjoying the city. After a quick dinner, we ended up finding a very nice small pub where we ended up spending the rest of the evening, having a few beers and drinks, before we had to take the train back to our hotel in Noordwijk. Back at the hotel, we played a few board games before we headed to bed.

Day 10:

On Friday, it was time for the B team to take over the test campaign. Today, we repeated the test we performed over the last few days, hoping it would work the second time. We started by performing a functional test, so that the entire satellite would be reset to default settings. After completing the test, we saw that the satellite was able to enter Low Power mode, as it was supposed to do. Hereafter, we charged the satellite, to see if it would transition into High Power mode, which it also did as expected. It thus seemed as if everything was working normally again. This was further confirmed when we discharged the batteries, and saw the transition from High power to Low Power mode yet again. The day therefore ended up being a very good day, since we had the satellite back to normal again, with the power transitions working as expected, for great joy for both the A and B team. Both teams met up in the afternoon at the Escape bar at ESTEC, where we had a few beers and enjoyed that the satellite was in good shape, and that we had a few relaxing days ahead of us, now that the weekend began.

150312 - Thermal Vacuum test of AAUSAT5 - Day 7-9

Day 9:

During Thursday we, The “A-team”, handed over the test to the newly arrived “B-team”, meaning all 6 of the AAUSAT5 representative in Holland spent the day at ESTEC. It was decided on the day that we should try and discharge the batteries again, and if the satellite did not transition from High power to Low power mode then we should just keep discharging to see whether the Ultra-Low power mode was functional. However, yet again the satellite did not change power modes.

While we discharged the batteries, we decided that the most reasonable way to spend the time would be to try and look through the code, in case of the failed transitioning being a result of a bug or error in the code. Sadly we did not find the cause of the problem in the code, even though we had some hunches.

After discharging the batteries for a few hours we approached the predetermined voltage at which the satellite should go into Ultra-Low power mode. Fortunately the satellite successfully transitioned from High power mode to Ultra-Low power mode, resulting in all subsystems being turned off. This was expected, since this transition is a hardware switch that do not rely on any software whatsoever. After a short meeting with our ESA supervisors we decided to charge the batteries, so that we could test whether the satellite would transition from Ultra-Low power mode to Low power or High power mode.

Luckily the satellite transitioned out of Ultra-Low power mode, but directly into High power mode, effectively meaning that we had somehow managed to “lose” a power mode.

However since it was becoming quite late, it was decided to call it a day by then, and go to the ESTEC bar with our supervisors and the OUFTI cubesat team, who had spent the week vibrating their satellite. At the bar we held a small foosball tournament and shared a few drinks, as it was the last day at ESTEC for both the AAUSAT5 A-team and the OUFTI team.

Day 8:

Wednesday started out with charging the batteries, until they were at a level where we were sure that the satellite should be in High power mode. We then decided to perform a so called “cleaning” of our EPS subsystem, to make sure that we had not accidentally overridden the satellite’s default power mode settings.

By the time we were done the clock was around 2 o’clock and we could finally start discharging the batteries again while closely observing the voltage levels and subsystems. However by the end of the day the satellite had once again not changed power modes, which resulted in the group’s morale being quite low.

However, with the arrival of the 3 AAUSAT5 members who were to complete the rest of the test campaign, our morale was raised a little, as it was nice to see some known faces, as well as having someone with a clear mind to discuss possible causes with.

Day 7:

2 members of the AAUSAT5 team in the middle of a functional test

Tuesday kicked off with us raising the temperature in the chamber up to the operational 45 degree Celsius, for our 2nd operational cycle. We quickly performed the functionality test of the satellite, to determine whether it was still functioning as intended, and were able to start the more in depth testing, that the 2nd operational cycle requires.

The first test was to see the satellite changing power modes, when discharging and charging the batteries. We could however not begin this test before charging the batteries to a certain level, and thus had to wait a few hours before we could start discharging.

This did however not go as smoothly as hoped. While approaching the required voltage on the batteries, we observed that the AIS subsystem automatically turned on. This turned out to be a planned event when the batteries reached a certain voltage, which surprised some of us a little, as it was not something we had expected. Luckily one of the AAUSAT5 members quickly verified that it was working as intended, and we were allowed to start discharging.

The discharging phase did however not go as intended. The satellite did not change power modes from High power mode to Low power mode at the predetermined voltage level. We continued to discharge to see if anything would happen, but at the end of the day the satellite was still in High power mode. It was therefore decided with our ESA supervisors that we should contact out homebase in Aalborg and try again tomorrow.

150309 - Thermal Vacuum test of AAUSAT5 - Day 3-6

Day 6:

We started our 2nd week by beginning the first operational cycle. For this, we had to go from 35 degrees to 45 degrees Celsius. This was thought to be a somewhat easy and fast process, but it did however turn out to be a bit more difficult, since the temperature had a hard time stabilizing. This meant that we did not get to the desired temperature before midday.

While testing the satellite we found that the communication subsystem was affected by more noise than usually. This was caused by a ground station which we had just setup during the waiting period. So while the problem was easily fixed by turning of the station, we still had to fill out another NCR.

The rest of the cycle did however go on without any problems, though it did take a bit longer to complete the cycle than we thought it would, due to the aforementioned problems.

After the first cycle was completed, we decided to leave the satellite at ambient temperature and come back early tomorrow, Tuesday, to start the second, more detailed, operation cycle.

Day 4-5:

Most of our weekend was spent on relaxing, by playing some board games and watching some TV shows together, as well as getting some work done on our individual courses and semester projects. We also decided to spend some town in the nearby town Leiden, where we walked through the local market while enjoying the weather and the cozy town.

Day 3:

The 3rd day we met at 9 o’clock at ESTEC and started the second part of the non-operational cycle. We all made guesses on how long it would take for us to complete the cycle. Most of the guesses were at around 6-8 hours except for a few saying 3-4 hours or so, which was seen as a really optimist guess.

Nonetheless, we hit the -40 degree target after only a few hours and could start heating up the chamber again so that we could run a test on the satellite, to see whether it had survived or not. After a few hours we hit our operational temperature. However due to a procedural error the test dragged on for quite some time, and we had to fill out our first Non-Conformance Report (NCR).

At 4 pm the cycle was completed and we decided to set the chamber to go to an ambient temperature over the weekend, so that we could get the first operational cycle done the next Monday.

Afterwards our supervisors invited us to come along with them to the ESTEC bar again, where we shared some drinks with them and some of their fellow colleagues. After a few hours and a good time we decided to go back to the hotel and relax.

150305 - Thermal Vacuum test of AAUSAT5 - Day 1 & 2

Day 2:

Our second day started out by yet again testing AAUSAT5’s functionality, this time in a vacuum, which showed that no difference had occurred from any of our previous tests. We then had a Test Readiness Review with our 4 supervisors, where the thermal vacuum test procedure and the previous tests were discussed, as well as determining whether there would be any hindrance from completing the test.

Despite for a few technicalities, the meeting ended with the test campaign being officially declared started. This was marked by starting the first thermal cycle, the Non-operational cycle where AAUSAT5 is exposed to the most extreme temperatures it can take, while being turned off.

After a few hours, it was possible for us to test the satellite after it had been at its hottest tolerable temperature, with no change in functionality, and started lowering the temperature for tomorrow for the cold part of the cycle.

After completing the tests planned for the day our 3 primary supervisors showed us the ESTEC bar, where we had a beer while talking with them about being students in Denmark as well as being members of AAU Student Space.

Hopefully we will be able to complete the Non-operational cycle tomorrow, and maybe even start the 1st operational cycle

Day 1:

AAUSAT5 in Aalborg before transporting it to the Netherlands

Yesterday morning, the 4th of March, we arrived in the Netherlands at the ESTEC facilities, after spending the last several days on getting AAUSAT5 cubesat ready for the thermal vacuum test. The thermal vacuum test exposes AAUSAT5 to the harsh environment of space, by changing the temperature in a vacuum chamber with the satellite in it. It is therefore also one of the most important tests that we have to perform, since we would otherwise not know whether the satellite could survive in space, before shipping it to the ISS for jettison.

We were greeted by 2 of our 4 ESA supervisors, and immediately made a visual inspection of AAUSAT5 to make sure that nothing had happened to it during the transport. Fortunately, nothing had happened to it externally, and a test showed that the satellite was functioning normally.

By then it was around midday and our supervisors asked us to come with them for lunch, in the main ESTEC cafeteria. Not only did they have some really good food there, but we also had a bit of a fan moment when we saw Matt Taylor, the project leader of the Rosetta mission, which amused our supervisors a lot.

After we got back from lunch, and since nothing had changed with the satellite, we started mounting the external thermocouples needed for the test, as well as connecting AAUSAT5 to the vacuum chamber. After inserting the satellite into the vacuum chamber, another test was performed to make sure that the interface of the chamber was working.

The day ended with the starting of the vacuum pump and all of us going back to our hotel and shortly after falling asleep, after a long, but fun and exciting, day of work.

It is now official that AAUSAT5 will be launched from ISS October 2015.

  • Upon kindly request from ESA we have now started on AAUSAT5.
  • Our third generation AIS satellite from AAU.
  • AAUSAT5 will be brought in orbit by the first Danish astronaut Andreas Mogensen

So we have now ramped up for this mission

  • We have already more than 25 students working on AAUSAT5 from Feb 2014.
  • and much more to come

Spar Nord Fonden in Media

A very good history atSpar Nord Fonden and AAUSATs

140809 - QM on way

QM is on way in lab these days

140708 - Updated sponsorlist

Our sponsors

To put it very short - Without sponsors no satellites !

  • Gold++ Sponsor
    • Sparnord Fonden
  • Gold Sponsors
    • Søfartsstyrelsen
    • Printca
    • Marel Denmark
    • Hytek Aalborg
  • Silver Sponsors
    • Mekoprint
  • Bronze Sponsors
    • Cobham
    • Rohde-Schwarz