|Name||BLAST (Bouchet Low-Earth Alpha/Beta Space Telescope)|
|Units or mass||2U|
|Status||not launched, expected in 2024|
|Entity||Academic / Education|
Map the distribution of galactic cosmic radiation across the night sky.
Map the distribution of galactic cosmic radiation across the night sky. The satellite will identify and count alpha particles and beta particles in the rays, and measure the radiation energy around Earth. BLAST will contribute to the ongoing search for the origins and nature of these rays, which will provide insight into the origins of the universe.
The primary mission of BLAST is to provide educational opportunities to undergraduates as they research, develop, fabricate and operate the satellite. The secondary mission is to collect data about cosmic rays in the South Atlantic Anomaly and publish it, so that anyone in the world can analyze the data for scientific projects.
Data on cosmic rays in LEO is particularly important for amateur radio as the radiation environment strongly influences propagation and the operation of amateur radio satellites in orbit. BLAST is an educational and scientific satellite designed, built, and operated entirely by undergraduates; no team members have a pecuniary interest in the project.
Development of the BLAST ground station benefited greatly from expertise of members of the Yale amateur radio club W1YU, including prof. Lamoreaux, and has already served as a starting point for many Yale students to pursue amateur radio licenses. After launch the BLAST team will host workshops on operating the ground station for W1YU and the Meriden Amateur Radio Club W1NRG, and offer members to staff satellite passes.
The design of the BLAST ground station will be published to serve as a training resource for other amateur satellite operators. Satellite transmissions will include telemetry and scientific data only, and the satellite will have a permanent FSK AX.25 beacon allowing any amateur to receive its telemetry Only the telecommand messages will be encoded, allowing any amateur in the world to receive telemetry and scientific data, as well as test their transmission equipment to see if they can successfully contact the satellite. Proposing a UHF 9k6 4GFSK AX 25 packet downlink