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SpooQy-1: The Quantum Nanosatellite


Fig.1 SpooQy-1 deployment from the International Space Station on 17th June, 2019, and mission patch.
SpooQy-1 is a 3U nanosatellite, designed and built at the Centre for Quantum Technologies.

Results from the SpooQy-1 experiment are now available on Optica. There is a story at Optica and a CQT highlight. There is also a short video about the why we want to build quantum satellites.

SpooQy-1 is intended to test the SPEQS-2 polarization-entangled photon-pair source in Low Earth Orbit. A successful test will raise the Technology Readiness Level of entanglement technology for building the space nodes of a global quantum internet.

A previous experiment, onboard GALASSIA, tested the SPEQS-1 photon-pair source. The next step will be to demonstrate satellite-to-ground entanglement distribution; this work is done jointly with RALSPACE (UK).

Fig.2 SpooQy-1 cut-away model showing avionics and SPEQS-2 location. 

Here are some fun facts:
  • 2.6kg, 3-U CubeSat bus (derived from GomX-3).
  • Carries the SPEQS-2 polarization-entangled photon-pair source.
  • Access to the International Space Station was arranged by JAXA (JAPAN). The local coordinator was the Singapore Space Technology Association.
  • Launched from Wallops Island, USA on 18th April, 2019 (Cygnus).
  • Deployed from the International Space Station on 17th June, 2019 at approximately 6:20 pm SGT.
  • NORAD Catalog Number: 44332.
  • Two UHF ground stations (FHNW, Switzerland and NUS, Singapore).
  • SpooQy-1 was featured in the plays, The Golden Record 2.0 & 3.0.
  • Carries a commemorative plaque from the NUS, Centre for the Arts.
Beacon signals were received on the first pass over our sister ground station at FHNW in Switzerland. 

 
 
 The team before satellite handover.The engineering model.
SpooQy-1 at JAXA after acceptance.
(Image from JAXA).
Robert Bedington & Bai Xueliang at JAXA. 
 
 
 Launch from Wallops Island.
(Image from NASA).
 SpooQy-1 is deployed.
(Image from NASA).
 
 
 Commemorative Plaque on SpooQy-1. Quote selected by NUS Centre for the Arts.


Estimated TLE on June 20th, 2019
1 44332U 98067QH 19170.93791621 .00005680 00000-0 10000-3 0 9995
2 44332 51.6434 347.6330 0006781 94.1126 266.0591 15.52057767 411