HOUSTON, TX – JUNE 30, 2021 – At 22:50 UTC yesterday, two Nanoracks customer CubeSats were deployed from the Nanoracks External CubeSat Deployer (E-NRCSD) on the Northrop Grumman Cygnus spacecraft. After a four-month mission to the International Space Station (ISS), the NG-15 Cygnus, named the S.S. Katherine Johnson, unberthed from the ISS and boosted into a higher orbit to deploy the CubeSats.
The two CubeSats, IT-SPINS and MySat-2, were released into a circular orbit about 490 km (304 miles) above the Earth’s surface.
The Ionospheric-Thermospheric Scanning Photometer for Ion-Neutral Studies (IT-SPINS) CubeSat was built by Montana State University and selected for launch by NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative (CSLI) as part of the Educational Launch of Nanosatellites-33 (ELaNa-33) mission complement, sponsored by the NASA Launch Services Program (LSP). The mission provides the first two-dimensional (2D) tomographic imaging from a 3U CubeSat to better understand the basic nature of the nocturnal ionosphere. This research strengthens fundamental understanding for development of ion gradient structures in the topside of the Earth’s ionosphere.
MySat-2 (also known as DhabiSat) was built by Khalifa University in Abu Dhabi, UAE and is the second Khalifa University CubeSat to be launched by Nanoracks. The first, MySat-1, was deployed from the NG-10 Cygnus spacecraft in February 2019. These small satellites enable students to design, implement and test software modules for attitude determination and control systems.
Nanoracks would like to thank Northrop Grumman and the NASA International Space Station Program for their continued support of Nanoracks’ operations on the ISS, the Cygnus spacecraft, and throughout low-Earth orbit.
Nanoracks LLC, an XO Markets company, is the world’s leading provider of commercial space services. XO Market is a member of the Voyager Space Holding Inc. family. XO Markets, is majority owned by Voyager Space Holdings Inc. and includes Nanoracks LLC, Nanoracks UAE, DreamUp and Nanoracks Europe.
Nanoracks believes commercial space utilization will enable innovation through in-space manufacturing of pharmaceuticals, fiber optics, and more, will allow for revolutionary Earth observation, and will make space a key player in finding the solution to Earth’s problems.
Today, the company offers low-cost, high-quality solutions to the most pressing needs for satellite deployment, basic and educational research, and more – in over 30 nations worldwide. Nanoracks’ future goals are focused on the re-purposing of the upper stages of launch vehicles in-space and converting these structures into commercial habitats, both humanly and robotically tended, throughout the solar system.