CIRBE (Colorado Inner Radiation Belt Experiment)

Name CIRBE (Colorado Inner Radiation Belt Experiment)
Type CubeSat
Units or mass 3U
Status Operational (SatNOGS dashboard as of 2023-04-20. SmallSat 2023 presentation.)
Launched 2023-04-15
NORAD ID 56188
Deployer Mercury [Maverick]
Launcher Falcon 9 (Transporter-7) (ELaNa 47)
Organisation University of Colorado Boulder
Institution University
Entity type Academic / Education
Nation US

Understand the formation of the inner belt electrons.


Understand the formation of the inner belt electrons, and to determine the source, intensity, and dynamic variations of these electrons in the inner Van Allen radiation belts. No instrument traversing the heart of the inner radiation belt is immune to effects from highly energetic proton contamination.

These results will help to better understand the space weather effects of these energetic particles to spacecraft subsystem and the radio propagation environment through the ionosphere. The ionosphere density variation, which affects radio propagation, is closely correlated with the precipitation of the energetic electrons. The CIRBE measurements will be used to gain a better understanding of the space environment and will serve to improve the stat‐of‐ the‐art.

CIRBE is in some ways similar to our previous very successful Cubesat (CSSWE) but differs in that it will have extreme fine energy resolution (100s of energy channels instead of 3). We propose to advance the existing instrument design by incorporating full pulse height analysis (PHA) and additional anti‐coincidence technique, such that it will have the fine energy resolution plus much cleaner measurements, but still fit in a 3U CubeSat. PHA will be performed onboard and only the final results: intensity, energy spectrum, pitch angle distribution (PAD) will be downloaded.


CIRBE commissioning completed efficiently and captured a significant radiation storm within 10 days of launch.

Sources [1] [2] [3] [4]
Photo sources [1] [2] [3] [4]

Last modified: 2023-12-02

Feel free to connect at any time.

Created by Erik Kulu


Social Platforms

LinkedIn: Nanosats
Twitter: @nanosatellites

Sister Websites

NewSpace Index:
Factories in Space:

Copyright © 2014 - 2024 Erik Kulu