Image: UNI
Image: UNI

The small 1-Unit CubeSat was developed at Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería del Perú. The small satellite uses an aluminum framework structure to provide stability to the satellite and offer mounting surfaces for internal and external equipment. The structural system of the satellite weighs 180 grams.

Chasqui 1 uses body-mounted solar cells for power generation with each triple-junction cell measuring 8 by 4 centimeters allowing a total of 12 cells to be mounted on the external panels of the satellite. The solar cells feed a Power Control Unit that employs Maximum Power Point Tracking to generate the maximum power from the arrays based on current temperature and illumination conditions. The Power Control Unit also distributes power to the various satellite systems and controls the state of charge of three Lithium-Ion batteries.

On average, the satellite generates 1 Watt of electrical power distributed via a 3.3 and a 5-Volt power bus. All satellite functions are controlled by an Onboard Computer module that measures 9.5 by 8.4 centimeters and operates at a frequency of 4MHz.

Attitude Determination is accomplished by 12 sun sensors – one on each external panel, one magnetometer unit and three angular velocity sensors. A GPS receiver allows orbit determination with high precision.

Attitude actuation is ensured by a permanent magnet as a backup system to six magnetic torquers. The satellite has a pointing accuracy of three degrees in imaging mode and 20 degrees for communications sessions with ground stations. Chasqui 1 uses the VHF and UHF bands for imagery downlink and command uplink achieving data rates of up to 9600bps.

The satellite carries two cameras – one operating in the visible wavelength while the other acquires near-infrared imagery. The CMOS detectors of the cameras provide images of 640 by 480 pixels. The two cameras will be used to acquire images of Peru for agricultural monitoring and resource management and the observation of deforestation and natural disasters.