In a major boost to the space-based activities being carried out at College of Engineering Pune (CoEP), the state government this week allocated Rs 50 lakh for the second phase of Mission Swayam. On June 22 last year, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) had
successfully launched COEP satellite, Swayam, along with 19 others. The Maharashtra state department of higher and technical education is sharing the Swayam’s Cube SAT 2 (CSAT) mission set for a budget of Rs 83.50 lakh with ISRO. Confirming the development to Pune Newsline, CoEP faculty advisor CSAT (satellite initiative), Manisha Khaladkar, said, “The government has approved the budget of Rs 50 lakh and we are now awaiting a final go ahead from ISRO.”
In November last year, the college had submitted its concept design for the CSAT to ISRO.
Being centred around solar sails, or equipment that make use of solar energy instead of electricity to charge the payload, the main objective in this later phase is to demonstrate orbit manoeuvering using solar sails, said a member of the Swayam team.
In addition, they will also be characterising and monitoring the trapped solar radiations to check the fluxes (energy differences) of charged particles.
Updating the current status of the mission, Khaladkar said, “Work for the second phase is progressing well. The students are currently working on developing prototypes of the payloads.”
With the government having sanctioned the budget, most of it will be spent on building the payloads and solar sails, the highlight of the project.
“Along with other onboard equipment, we need to develop data storage and communication devices,” she added.