Microsatellite built by CU students launched

Students from CU Boulder built a microsatellite that was launched into space Tuesday.

KUSA - A microsatellite that students from University of Colorado in Boulder built is making its journey to the International Space Station, a press release from CU said.

The satellite, dubbed Challenger, launched April 18 at 9:11 a.m. from Cape Canaveral, Fla., as part of an effort to study the Earth’s atmosphere. 

It was not the only microsatellite launched, but one of 38. And all of them were designed by students from around the globe.

This collaborative project is called QB50, and aims to create a constellation of microsatellites to measure the mid-lower thermosphere, an area of the atmosphere between 125 and 250 miles in altitude.

Scott Palo, an aerospace professor at CU Boulder, said 53 students took part in Challenger's construction.

"Everybody's thrilled about the fact that it's finally launched into space," he said.

A CU student that worked on the project said the data gathered will enable researchers to better understand Earth’s atmosphere and its relationship with the sun's radiation.

But it will take a few months for the data to be delivered to the students. Once the microsatellites reach the space station, they’ll be deployed and orbit Earth several times a day.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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