STRaND-1 satellite operational in orbit

STRaND-1, the first smartphone-operated satellite, has been declared operational in orbit.

The 3U CubeSat, created by a team from the University of Surrey's Surrey Space Centre (SSC) and Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL), was launched into orbit onboard a PSLV C-20 rocket from India on February 25, 2013, becoming the first ever 'phonesat' in space. "STRaND-1 has been an excellent project linking academia with industry and taking space engineering research through to a real mission," said Professor Craig Underwood, deputy director of the SSC. "It's another major space success for the UK, delivered by Surrey in an amazingly short time and we are looking forward to receiving the first data from the on-board smartphone soon." The STRaND-1 mission team will continue commissioning of the satellite's systems in orbit during the next few weeks and, after this phase has been successfully completed, phase two of the mission will see the testing of the smartphone's experimental apps and subsequently a number of in-orbit operations being switched over to the smartphone.