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FedSat 1

FedSat 1

FedSat (Federation Satellite) is an Australian scientific microsatellite mission, a 58 cm cube weighing approximately 50 kg. It was launched in late 2002 from Japan by Japan's National Space Development Agency. Its purposes are:

  • to establish Australian capability in microsatellite technologies;
  • to develop expertise necessary for sustaining those industries and profiting from them;
  • to test and develop Australian-developed intellectual property;
  • and to provide a research platform for Australian space-science, communication and GPS studies.

FedSat is being developed by the Cooperative Research Centre for Satellite Systems, which combines the resources and skills of 12 Australian organisations. Contributions from each of the partner organisations are doubled by the Commonwealth Government, under its Commonwealth Government's Cooperative Research Centre's Program. The total budget of the Centre is approximately $60 million over 7 years, with $20 million of that allocated for the FedSat mission.

Much of FedSat is being developed in Australia by the CRCSS. Three of the 6 main payloads have been fully developed by the CRCSS, and the other three have been supplied by overseas organisations in consultation with the CRCSS. The satellite platform, the structure that houses and maintains the payloads, is being provided by overseas organisations. CRCSS engineers could have developed an Australian platform, but given the time available from project-start to launch, that was not practical. So the CRCSS opted to contract an overseas platform supplier, avoiding the need to reinvent established technologies.


  • GPS Receiver
  • NewMag: The NewMag magnetometer is a very sensitive and rapid-sampling device for measuring the strength of the Earth's magnetic field.
  • High performance computing:
    The FedSat high performance computing payload is the world's first use of reconfigurable computing technology in space.
  • Ka-band transponder
  • Baseband processor
  • CD ROM: FedSat also carries a compact disc mounted on the side, containing the audio messages members of the Australian public recorded to go into space from March to August 2000.
Nation: Australia
Type / Application: Science, magnetosphere
Operator: Technology
Contractors: Space Innovations Limited (bus)
Configuration: MicroSIL bus
Propulsion: None
Power: Solar cells, batteries
Mass: 58 kg
Orbit: 792 km × 806 km, 98.67
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
FedSat 1 2002-056B 14.12.2002 Ta YLP-1 H-2A-202 with ADEOS 2, WEOS, Micro-Lab-Sat 1

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