Published: 7. November 2016 by: Trond Abrahamsen

Drone Pilots Wanted

Andøya Space Center operates a fleet of fixed wing and multirotor drones. We are expanding and need more pilots.

More information here ( Norwegian text only ) : http://andoyaspace.no/?page_id=2571

Published: 4. October 2016 by: Trond Abrahamsen

Fly a Rocket!

The European Space Agency (ESA), Andøya Space Center (ASC), NAROM and Norwegian Space Center has teamed up to offer twenty students the chance to participate in a sounding rocket programme.

The “Fly a Rocket!” programme is targeting students who may be too old to enter the secondary school CanSat competitions and yet who are not old enough or technically skilled enough to apply for higher level student projects.

Online Course

The students will meet online, working through a social media group.

The course is designed for students that not necessarily are studying space related subjects today, but who might wish to learn more about the space industry. The online course is flexible and it will be adjusted so it fits with the students regular studies.

The ‘Fly a Rocket!’ programme is designed to be a taster of what it’s like to work in Europe’s space industry,” says Alexander Kinnaird, Fly a Rocket! Programme Coordinator at  ESA’s  Education and Knowledge Management Office.

In 2017, the students will meet at ASC, to assemble and then launch their rocket.

More Information

ESA Looking for Students for its new Fly a Rocket! Programme

Published: 8. July 2016 by: Trond Abrahamsen

Second Launch of Improved Malemute

ASC and DLR’s MORABA (Mobile Rocket Base) have completed the second qualification flight of the Improved Malemute rocket motor.

It was a successful flight and again the first results show that the vehicle performed nominal and reached an apogee of approximately 117 km.

The Improved Malemute was flown for the second time in a single stage three-fin configuration. The motor is owned and operated by DLR MORABA which also developed and provided the vehicle flight hardware. The stabilizing fins on the vehicle were designed and manufactured in DLR’s department for Space System Integration and comprised carbon-fibre lightweight technology. The qualification of this motor and hardware was the primary goal of the mission and the second successful flight concludes this effort and now provides a powerful research platform to the scientific community.

The scientific payload on this flight was the MaxiDusty 1b. Equipped with instruments designed to investigate various phenomena related to dust particles in the Middle Atmosphere. The principal investigator is Ove Havnes from the University of Tromsø. The scientific payload was designed and built by Andøya Space Center and included instruments from University of Tromsø, University of Oslo, Graz University of Technology, University of Alberta, University of Colorado, Stockholm University and University of Leeds.

The scientific mission was supported by ground based soundings from the Maarsy Radar.

The qualification mission was supported by the tracking of two Radar stations, one from ASC and one from DLR MORABA with combined operating teams. The on-board data has been received from ASC ground based telemetry stations.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

Lift-off of the MaxiDusty 1b payload with an Improved Malemute motor.

Lift-off of the MaxiDusty 1b payload with an Improved Malemute motor.

Lift-off of the MaxiDusty 1b payload with an Improved Malemute motor.

Lift-off of the MaxiDusty 1b payload with an Improved Malemute motor.

Lift-off of the MaxiDusty 1b payload with an Improved Malemute motor.

Lift-off of the MaxiDusty 1b payload with an Improved Malemute motor.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MaxiDusty 1b payload attached to an Improved Malemute motor on the ASC U3 launcher.

MPS36 Radar Crew

The ASC / DLR MORABA crew of the MPS36 during the launch campaign.

Radar Crew

The DLR MORABA crew of the DLR tracking radar

Published: 30. June 2016 by: Trond Abrahamsen

Successful Launch of Improved Malemute

On June 30th at 11:43:18 local time (09:43:18 UTC) an Improved Malemute sounding rocket was launched from Andøya Space Center (ASC) in a cooperative qualification effort of ASC and DLR’s Mobile Rocket Base (MORABA).

It was a successful launch and the initial results show that the vehicle performed totally nominal and reached an apogee of approximately 115 km and all instruments worked as planned.

The Improved Malemute was flown for the first time in a single stage three-fin configuration. The motor is owned and operated by DLR MORABA which also developed and provided the vehicle flight hardware. The qualification of this motor and hardware was the primary goal of this mission.

The “passenger” on this maiden flight of the sounding rocket was the MaxiDusty payload. It was equipped with numerous instruments designed to investigate various phenomena related to dust particles in the Middle Atmosphere. The principal investigator is Ove Havnes from the University of Tromsø. The scientific payload was designed and built by Andøya Space Center and included instruments from University of Tromsø, University of Oslo, Graz University of Technology, University of Alberta, University of Colorado, Stockholm University and University of Leeds.

The scientific mission was supported by several ground based Lidar soundings from the Alomar observatory and also the Maarsy and Eiscat Radars.

The qualification mission was supported by the tracking of two Radar stations, one from ASC and one from DLR MORABA with combined operating teams. The on-board data has been received from ASC ground based telemetry stations.

MaxiDusty launch with Improved Malimutt Motor

MaxiDusty launch with Improved Malemute Motor

MaxiDusty launch with Improved Malimutt Motor

MaxiDusty launch with Improved Malemute Motor

MaxiDusty payload on pad with Improved Malimutt Motor

MaxiDusty payload on pad with Improved Malemute Motor

MaxiDusty payload on pad with Improved Malimutt Motor

MaxiDusty payload on pad with Improved Malemute Motor

MaxiDusty payload and launch team on pad with Improved Malimutt Motor.

MaxiDusty campaign team on pad with Improved Malemute Motor.

Published: 2. June 2016 by: Kolbjørn Blix

CEDAR email: CEDAR/GEM workshop: Grand Challenge Initiative — Cusp

GCI

“Grand Challenge Initiative — Cusp” Community Engagement Workshop (original post by Astrid Maute <maute@ucar.edu>)

Tuesday, June 21, 1:30-3:30 PM
Workshop conveners: Jøran Moen, U Oslo, Kolbjorn Blix (Norway / ASC), Doug Rowland, NASA GSFC

This workshop is designed to maximize community involvement and engagement in a new multinational effort, called the “Grand Challenge Initiative — Cusp”.  This initiative is an effort to leverage existing investments and previously selected missions on behalf of the wider scientific community. It is designed to provide an in-depth examination of the Earth’s magnetic cusps, particularly cusp electrodynamics, M-I coupling, and I-T response and dynamics.

So far, the Grand Challenge is comprised of five sounding rocket missions:

  • TRICE-2 (USA / NASA — PI: Craig Kletzing) — studying the dynamics of magnetic reconnection in the cusp, and determining the extent of spatial patchiness vs. temporal burstiness
  • VISIONS-2 (USA / NASA — PI: Doug Rowland) — studying ion outflow in the cusp
  • ICI-5 (Norway, PI: Jøran Moen)  — studying the generation of ionospheric irregularities in strong shear flows in the cusp
  • SS-530-3 (Japan / JAXA, PI: Takumi Abe)  — ion outflow in the cusp
  • G-CHASER (multinational, lead: Norway)  — university student rocket (hoping to recruit interested universities to provide student payloads)

There are opportunities for additional rocket missions, potentially Japanese, Swedish, German, or additional USA involvement.

In addition to the sounding rocket missions, we are hoping to leverage the excellent capabilities of the EISCAT and CUTLASS radars, as well as multiple ground-based optical sites (Kjell Henriksen Observatory among others).
We hope this workshop will stimulate discussion amongst the GEM and CEDAR community about other potential efforts which could leverage this large multinational investment, and work together to dramatically improve our understanding of cusp dynamics.

This could include complementary space-based observations, ground-based observations, theory, or modeling efforts. A website for this initiative, which includes the latest version of the workshop agenda is located at: http://www.grandchallenge.no/

Potential collaborators who may wish to share their ideas on participation should email a single power point slide outlining their ideas to Doug Rowland (douglas.e.rowland@nasa.gov) and we will add you to the agenda. Of particular interest may be the G-CHASER mission concept, which is designed to provide a unique and exciting platform for student-led experiments in support of the Grand Challenge effort.

G-CHASER is still actively recruiting university partners for this effort, led by Kolbjorn Blix of ASC.

Sincerely,
Doug Rowland, Jøran Moen, Kolbjorn Blix / workshop conveners

Published: 2. June 2016 by: Kolbjørn Blix

The upcoming “Imp. Malemute Qualification (IM QUAL) with the MaxiDusty Payload (MXD)” campaign

The top section of the two MaxiDusty payloads getting prepared at the Space Systems dept. at Andøya Space Center

The top section of the two MaxiDusty payloads getting prepared at the Space Systems dept. at Andøya Space Center

The Improved Malemute Qualification mission with the two Maxi DustyPayloads 1 & 1b combines two main objectives in a collaborative effort by DLR MORABA and ASC. The vehicle side qualifies a new sounding rocket vehicle which shall be made available to the scientific community. The science side will contain a diverse set of newly developed probes and instruments leading to this becoming the most complete campaign to date to examine cloud formation in the Earth’s middle atmosphere (mesosphere). The majority of the dust/aerosol instruments are developed at UiT, The Arctic University of Norway in Tromsø, while most of the plasma instruments are engineered at the University of Oslo. The two payloads host guest Instruments from USA, Sweden and Austria. The flights will be supported by radar and lidar, particularly from the ALOMAR Observatory at Andøya Space Center. In addition to the Norwegian researchers, the scientific team also comprises colleagues from Sweden, Germany, Austria, UK and USA.

DLR MORABA supports the scientific objectives of the MaxiDusty 1 and 1b payloads by offering a flight opportunity atop the first two qualification launches of the Improved Malemute rocket vehicle and is responsible for the rocket motor system and its diagnostics. ASC manages the technical part of the scientific payloads as well as the range operations. The MaxiDusty -1 and MaxiDusty-1b payloads are built and qualified by the Space Systems dept. at ASC.

The launch operation will be conducted from Andøya Space Center between June 24th and July 11th 2016, 1100-1600 LT.

Published: 31. May 2016 by: Trond Abrahamsen

SMILE: Launch of Small Innovative Launcher for Europe

Satellite launch from ASC

European project for small satellites launcher targets independent access to space for small satellites

Amsterdam, 31 May 2016 – Today, the ‘Small Innovative Launcher for Europe’ (SMILE), a European Union Horizon 2020 project, was officially launched at the European Space Solutions conference in The Hague. From January 2016 until the end of 2018, a consortium of 14 European companies and institutes will be working on a launcher for satellites up to 50 kg and a Europe-based launch facility at Andøya, Norway. The aim is to enable an affordable launch capability for several smaller satellites or a single micro-satellite.

The project has received a 4 million EURO grant from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme. Its results encompass the design of the launcher and the ground segment as well as prototypes of key components to demonstrate critical technology. The SMILE consortium consists of Netherlands Aerospace Centre (NLR), German Aerospace Centre (DLR), Nammo Raufoss AS, Terma, Andøya Space Centre (ASC), National Institute for Aerospace Research – INCAS, Airborne Composites Automation, Heron Engineering, ISIS – Innovative Solutions In Space (ISIS), 3D Systems Leuven, PLD Space, Tecnalia, BoesAdvies, and WEPA-Technologies.

Expanding market for small satellites

Nowadays, small satellites are accepted as a part of the ecosystem and the market for small satellites is rapidly expanding. These satellites however have to share a ride on a large launcher that is dedicated to a primary large satellite. This dictates the timeline and target orbit, which is often conflicting with the intended missions of the small satellites.

Objectives SMILE project

The first objective of the SMILE project is to design a concept for an innovative, cost-effective European launcher for small satellites and a Europe-based ground facility for small launchers based on the evolution of the existing sounding rocket launch site at Andøya Space Center in Norway. Another objective is to increase the Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of critical technologies by developing prototypes of key components, such as rocket engines, structures, and avionics. The last objective is to create a roadmap for the small satellites launcher system from a technical, operational, and economical perspective.

The focus of the project is on cost-effectiveness of the technologies, such as reusable liquid rocket engines, low-cost hybrid rocket engines, unitary modular engines, automated manufacturing of composite structures, and commercial-of-the-shelf components. Especially for small launchers, cost reduction is essential to allow a competitive target price for a dedicated and timely launch.

More Information
Marina Petrozzi Ilstad
Director of Engineering

Telephone: +47 47443922
Telephone: +31. 6 28665088

marina@andoyaspace.no

Published: 30. May 2016 by: Kolbjørn Blix

The Grand Challenge Initiative Cusp Project

The Grand Challenge Initiativ

The Grand Challenge Initiative

 The Grand Challenge Initiative (GCI) is a large-scale international collaboration effort targeting advancement in specific, fundamental issues in space and earth science. The GCI concept was conceived and developed over the past two years by the Andoya Space Center (ASC) and the University of Oslo.  Their work has culminated in the first GCI project – “GCI Cusp” – to determine the multi-scale physics of heating and charged particle precipitation in the ionosphere specific to the geomagnetic cusp region.

The GCI Cusp Project is designed to advance the common understanding of cusp region space physics through coordinated experimental and theoretical research using ground based instruments, modeling, sounding rocket investigations, and satellite based instruments. International student participation through space plasma model development and a dedicated student rocket (G-CHASER) is an essential aspect of the GCI concept. Strategic use of public outreach, particularly via the tools of social media, is also a vital component of the GCI Cusp Project.

Read more here…

Published: 30. May 2016 by: Trond Abrahamsen

First NLC of 2016

MP_NLC_single_20160526_VH_S0_09

The first plot of NLC in 2016

The Alomar lidar observatory measured their first NLC of 2016.

Noctilucent clouds, or NLC, are clouds composed of tiny crystals of water ice and they float at about 80 kilometers altitude. When the light from the sun hits them they glow in a blueish color. NLC occurs mostly around the polar regions. Alomar measured the NLC on May 26th, at 16:00 UTC. The RMR* lidar system which detected the clouds was operated by staff engineer Ingrid Hansen.

Wikipedia has an impressive gallery of NLC photographs here.

The Alomar Observatory is host to several ground based scientifc instrumentation covering the Arctic atmosphere.

* = The abbreviation RMR refers to the atmospheric scattering mechanisms used for the signal detection, which are Rayleigh, Mie, and Raman scattering.

Published: 13. December 2015 by: Trond Abrahamsen

RENU II Launched

Photo from the lift-off of the RENU II vehicle. By Trond Abrahamsen, ASC

Photo from the lift-off of the RENU II vehicle. By Trond Abrahamsen, ASC

At 0834 local time December 13th, the Nasa rocket RENU II was launched from Andøya Space Center. It was a successful launch where the initial results shows that all experiments worked as planned and the vehicle reached an apogee of 447 km.

The RENU II was a four stage Black Brant XII sounding rocket designed to investigate neutral upwelling in the cusp region of Earth’s magnetosphere. The principal investigator was Dr. Marc Lessard from the University of New Hampshire.

The payload was built by Nasa Wallops, and included instruments from University of New Hampshire, Darthmouth College, Cornell University and Aerospace Corp.

The mission was supported by several ground based observation sites such as EISCAT Svalbard, SuperDARN Finland and the Kjell-Henriksen Observatory at Svalbard.

Telemetry was received by Andøya Space Center, Nasa, KSAT Tromsø and KSAT Svalbard.

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