Soon you can take selfies from space. On Wednesday, the student organization Orbit NTNU launched the SelfieSat satellite with SpaceX.
NTNUs . orbit The first satellite, SelfieSat, was launched into space on Wednesday this week with a Falcon 9 rocket from SpaceX.
SelfieSat takes the world’s first selfie from a satellite in space. The external LCD screen displays the images sent by the audience. A camera mounted on a foldable selfie stick takes a picture of the screen with the Earth in the background.
– With the launch of SelfieSat, Orbit NTNU will have managed what many claimed was impossible, said Ulrik Falk-Petersen, CEO of Orbit NTNU before the event.
The students behind SelfieSat
Orbit NTNU is a volunteer student organization that educates the aerospace engineers of tomorrow. They build satellites with proprietary subsystems.
The SelfieSat has been developed and built by student volunteers at Orbit NTNU since 2018.
– A few students managed in their spare time, of their own free will, to develop, build and send a satellite into space. We are now happy to show all of Norway that you don’t have to be an astronaut or a superhero to be able to take part in the Norwegian space adventure. Only through commitment, unity and leadership can you create the best artistic student environment in Norway. With the first Norwegian student satellite operating in orbit, we hope to inspire as many people as possible to take part in the wonderful time that awaits us on the Norwegian spaceflight, says Valk Petersen.
This is the organization’s first satellite to go into space. This indicates that volunteer students can work in the space along with their studies, only with the help and support of companies and the university.
The launch is the last major step before Orbit NTNU can operate and talk to its first satellite. This paves the way for a future where more students in Norway can work with space technology.
Much of the team traveled to Florida to watch the launch. Two of them were personally invited to SpaceX’s VIP guest event for customers.
What is a selfie sat?
The goal of the project is to inspire and bring the space a bit closer, and to show how accessible the space has become for most people.
SelfieSat’s last track is a low-lying track with a range of 530-558 km. After being launched into space, the SelfieSat is teleported to the correct path by Momentus Vigoride. Vigorids are spacecraft that carry satellites and inter-orbit payloads into space.
When SelfieSat is on track, it will use the NTNU Student Ground Station, a radio tower in the office at NTNU in Trondheim. From here, students will send and receive space selfies, status updates, and sensor data on a regular basis.
A specially trained operations team will handle all satellite commands and missions. In March of this year, we delivered a SelfieSat to Momentus for integration in San Jose, California.
150 students and many other contributors
We are now launching our first satellite with SpaceX this summer. This winter, our second satellite will be the first in world history to be launched from European soil, says Falk Petersen.
The launch of SelfieSat will be Orbit NTNU’s biggest achievement to date. After 4 long years, it is amazing to actually watch our satellite launched into space with SpaceX. It was an honor to work with such talented people who gave everything for our projects to come to fruition, says Evind Ikli Hegst, former CEO of Orbit NTNU.
Four years ago, it was all just a distant dream. Now we are actually launching our satellite into space. There are many who helped us on our way to get here today. This would not have been possible without our mentors, sponsors, professors and partners, says Andreas Wester, SelfieSat Project Manager and Executive Vice President of Orbit NTNU.
More than 150 students contributed to the realization of this project.
“Explorer. Unapologetic entrepreneur. Alcohol fanatic. Certified writer. Wannabe tv evangelist. Twitter fanatic. Student. Web scholar. Travel buff.”