© ingrid prats dreamstime.com Electronics Production | October 12, 2012
ÅAC Mictrotec's satellite success
The Uppsala based company ÅAC Microtec has, on commission from the Swedish National Space Board and American NASA, delivered all the electronics to NASA’s test satellite TechEdSa.
NASA’s test satellite, TechEdSat, was separated from the International Space Station ISS on October 4, 2012. The satellite was constructed in less than 4 months by a team from NASA Ames Research Center, San Jose State University and ÅAC Microtec. What makes TechEdSat unique, according to a release by ÅAC Microtec, is that NASA uses electronics from Swedish ÅAC Microtec for control and operation of the satellite. Normally the countries only exchange scientific instruments and data. “That NASA chooses to try out our computers and power supply systems for its future satellites is of course unique in the world and proof of the technological excellence we have in Sweden and the high international standing that the Swedish National Space Board has as a technology and innovation engine,” says Fredrik Bruhn, Vice President and responsible for business development at ÅAC Microtec. The Swedish National Space Board and NASA closed a ten year collaboration agreement in June 2011 concerning the development, testing and use of small satellites, with the Uppsala based company ÅAC Microtec as the designated strategic supplier. The National Space Board and NASA makes equal investments in the respective country and share the end results on equal terms, with the task allocation that NASA handles trials and testing and the Swedish National Space Board supplies technology through ÅAC Microtec. ¨ ÅAC is already busy building the next satellite demonstrator, a 10 kg (6U CubeSat) satellite that will be delivered to the US in the spring 2013 for launch and trial in the fall the same year. “The satellite that will be tested next year is focused on demonstrating advanced communications solutions and brings us to the size of commercial small satellites that will really open up the space service market, for instance with machine – machine communication and what is called internet-of-things,” says Fredrik Bruhn, Vice President and responsible for business development at ÅAC Microtec.