Picasso CubeSat to investigate upper layers of the atmostphere

Picasso CubeSat investigates upper layers of the atmostphere
Credit: BISA

The PICosatellite for Atmospheric and Space Science Observations (Picasso) CubeSat, designed to investigate the upper layers of Earth's atmosphere.

Developed for ESA by the Belgian Institute of Space Aeronomy with VTT Finland and the UK's Clyde Space, Picasso will measure the distribution of ozone in the stratosphere and profile the temperature of the mesosphere and the in the ionosphere.

Just 30x10x10 cm in size, the CubeSat will use a miniaturised multispectral imager for atmospheric 'limb sounding' with the Sun as the , and a multineedle 'Langmuir probe' sampling the electron density of the space around it.

CubeSats are standardised pico- and nanosatellites formed in cubes of 10 cm per side, with a maximum mass of 1.5 kg per cube, intended to make access to space affordable for small companies, research institutes and universities. One-, two- or three-cube CubeSats are currently being flown.

Picasso is one of a number of CubeSat missions being backed by the In-Orbit Demonstration element of ESA's General Support Technology Programme. It will be launched in 2016 as part of QB50, a network of 50 CubeSats to probe largely unexplored layers of Earth's atmosphere.


Explore further

Almost anyone can hitchhike into space with a nanosatellite

Citation: Picasso CubeSat to investigate upper layers of the atmostphere (2015, January 29) retrieved 23 October 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-01-picasso-cubesat-upper-layers-atmostphere.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
39 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments

Jan 30, 2015
a network of 50 CubeSats to probe largely unexplored layers of Earth's atmosphere.


Unexplored layers of the atmosphere?

Sadly, it doesn't matter to the climate "scientists" that there are many aspects of the Earth's atmosphere that are unknown when they make their claims about the science of AGW as being "settled". It just goes to show that they rely on beliefs in their claims, not science.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more