ISU Satellite Ground Station


antenna2Installed during the summer of 2008, the ISU Satellite Ground Station is a fully automated satellite tracking station operating in the amateur radio frequencies. The ground station was built under the European Space Agency (ESA) Global Educational Network for Satellite Operations (GENSO) project, an endeavor to unite individual ground stations developed for local educational satellite projects into a global network, thus allowing educational institutions to download telemetry from their student-built satellites regardless of where the satellite was in its orbit. Installation was completed in the summer of 2008 by ESA Young Graduate Trainee Viktor Nikolaidis and John Rivett, Jim Heck and Graham Shirville, members of the Amateur Radio organization AMSAT-UK.

Detailed information on the ground station hardware can be found HERE.

control roomWhile the GENSO project is now defunct, ISU continues to use the satellite ground station to instruct Masters students in satellite communications. Past projects by students and faculty involving the ground station have included radio conversations with the International Space Station, downloading telemetry from cube satellites, performing a “Moon Bounce” with another amateur radio station in Thailand, and much more!

More recently ISU has been forming partnerships with other Universities and corporations to provide ground station support for cube satellites in Low Earth Orbit. This has included supporting the Nanosatisfi (now known as Spire) satellite “Ardusat”, and being recognized for an “outstanding contribution” to the 4M satellite flown to the Moon by Luxspace of Luxembourg!
ISU will serve as a secondary ground station for the QB50 UNSW EC0 satellite when it launches in February of 2016. More information on this satellite HERE.

Universities, companies, or amateur radio operators interested in collaborating with the ISU ground station should contact ISU Project Engineer Joshua Nelson.