The smallest and the lightest satellite in history has just been created by 18 year old, Rifath Sharook, from Tamil Nadu in India. His design has since been selected by National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to be launched into space. Weighing only 64g, the minuscule device is small enough to fit into the average pants pocket!
NASA confirmed that Sharook’s creation could be launched as soon as 21 June 2017, from one of the organisation’s official launchpads in Wallops Island, Virginia. The launch would signify an historic moment, as the first time that NASA would launch a satellite which was 100% designed and developed in the the Asian sub-continent of India. Sharook has affectionately named his invention KalamSat.
“We designed it completely from scratch. It will have a new kind of on-board computer and eight indigenous built-in sensors to measure acceleration, rotation and the magnetosphere of the earth.
The main challenge was to design an experiment to be flown to space which would fit a volume of [12cm³] weighing 64g. The main role of the satellite will be to demonstrate the performance of 3D-printed carbon fibre.” – R Sharook.
The 4hr flight will be a sub-orbital mission, during which the tiny satellite would operate for 12mins in a micro-gravity environment of space. We’re certain that this won’t be the last of Sharook’s outstanding achievements to be featured on our page. If you’d like to learn about satellites being made closer to home, check out our recent article on the nSight1.