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The ARCADE (Atmospheric Coupling and Dynamics Explorer) or INSPIRESAT 4 mission is a Singaporean experimental microsat mission. The project is part of NTUís Undergraduate Satellite Program, which provides an opportunity for engineering students to participate in a multidisciplinary hands-on space project.

Most nano-satellite and small satellite missions are designed for 400 km or higher altitudes. This is because small satellites, with mass, volume and power constraints, have limited propulsion capabilities to counteract the high aerodynamic drag in lower altitudes. Thus little or no science data has been gathered in-situ in the altitude range of 200 to 300 km by small satellite missions.

INSPIRESat-4 (IS4) Atmospheric Coupling and Dynamics Explorer (ARCADE) is a ring-deployed 27U CubeSat spacecraft that aims to bridge this gap by achieving a sustained flight in the VLEO (Very Low Earth Orbit) region to make in-situ Ionospheric plasma measurements. This paper first describes the science motivation of the mission. INSPIRESat-4 carries three payloads which are AtmoLITE (a Spatial Heterodyne Interferometer for upper-atmosphere temperature measurements), CIP (Compact Ionospheric Probe) for in-situ plasma measurements and an RGB Imager for high resolution imagery from VLEO.

Nation: Singapore
Type / Application: Technology
Operator: Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Contractors: Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Propulsion: None
Power: Solar arrays, batteries
Mass: 24 kg
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
ARCADE (INSPIREsat 4) 2023-109E 30.07.2023 Sr FLP PSLV-CA (2) with DS-SAR, VELOX AM, ORB-12 Strider, Galassia 2, NuLIoN, SCOOB 2


  • Nanyang Technological University: ARCADE
Further INSPIREsat missions:

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