WINSAT-1 – the Weather News Inc. Satellite 1 is a 10-Kilogram satellite dedicated to Arctic Sea and atmospheric monitoring. The spacecraft is 27 by 27 by 27 centimeters in size. It is equipped with a three-axis control system with navigation data provided by a magnetometer, gyroscopes, Sun sensors and star trackers while attitude control is provided by magnetic torquers and reaction wheels.
Power is provided by ultra triple-junction and triple-junction solar arrays mounted on five sides of the satellite providing 12.6 Watts of power. A UHF Communication System achieves data rates of up 38.4kbit/s for downlink and 9.6kbit/s for command uplink.
The satellite is equipped with two cameras – one for the visible spectrum and the other covers Near-Infrared Radiation. The two imagers have focal lengths of 8 millimeters and use 1024 by 1024-pixel detectors with 6.7 by 6.7-micrometer pixels. The cameras have a field of view of 56.4 by 56.4 degrees to cover a ground frame of 500 by 500 Kilometers with a sample distance of 500 meters. 10 frames are acquired per day. The two imagers are used to monitor Arctic Sea Ice.
The second payload of the satellite is the Laser Mission Unit that is being used to monitor the Carbon Dioxide Density in the atmosphere. Two lasers (1570nm and 1556nm) emit pulses in the nadir direction which are measured by a ground station using a parabolic antenna. The 1570nm beam is strongly absorbed by Carbon Dioxide while the 1556nm beam is not attenuated. Comparing the intensity of the two beams allows the CO2 column density to be determined.