Come June 21, and NASA will be launching world’s smallest satellite KalamSat. The tiny satellite is developed by an Indian teenager Rifath Sharook, who hails from Tamil Nadu’s Pallapatti town.
Sharook aged eighteen, made this satellite named as ‘KalamSat’ that weighs only 64 grammes. It was named after India’s nuclear scientist and former President, APJ Abdul Kalam.
Sharook’s project, the first to be manufactured via 3D printing, got selected through a competition, ‘Cubes in Space’, sponsored jointly by NASA and ‘I Doodle Learning’. The project aims to take the performance of new technology to space.
It will be launched from a NASA facility in Wallops Island.it will be the first time ever that it would be piloting an experiment by an Indian student.
Its key features are that, it would be a sub-orbital flight and after launch the mission span would be 240 minutes. The tiny satellite would operate for 12 minutes in a micro-gravity environment of space. “The main role of the satellite will be to demonstrate the performance of 3D-printed carbon fibre” says Sharook.
Speaking about his experience, Sharook added: “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 into a four-metre cube weighing 64 grammes”.
His experiment was funded by an organisation called ‘Space Kidz India’, said Sharook, adding he had a great interest in space and he was also a subscriber of the Nasa Kid’s Club.