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Space BD Successfully Deploys OPTIMAL-1 into orbit

Space BD
Astronaut Koichi Wakata. Credit: Space BD

Ibadan, 3 February 2o23. – Space BD has announced the deployment of the CubeSat OPTIMAL-1 into space from the Japanese experimental module Kibo on the International Space Station (ISS) at 6 pm (JST) on Friday, January 6, 2023. The Company provided all support for the deployment of the OPTIMAL-1. However, ArkEdge Space Inc., Pale Blue Inc., Seiren Co., Ltd., the University of Fukui, the School of Engineering at the University of Tokyo, and Mitsubishi Electric Corporation developed the CubeSat.

OPTIMAL-1 is a multi-mission satellite that will improve and demonstrate further enhancements to the 3U general-purpose bus capabilities. Besides this, it will provide technical demonstrations of a nano water propulsion system, edge computing, a nano-hyperspectral camera, and a Store and Forward LoRa Low Power Communications.

OPTIMAL-1 launched to the ISS on November 27, 2022, from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida aboard the SpaceX Crew Dragon resupply ship as part of NASA’s 26th Commercial Resupply Service mission (CRS-26). Astronaut Koichi Wakata, who is currently aboard the ISS, prepared the deployment on January 6. Following the deployment, OPTIMAL-1 has already successfully communicated with ground stations. Furthermore, there will be various demonstrations in the future, including a nano-propulsion system, communication device, and on-orbit advanced information processing technology.

Commenting on the project, Tetsuro Mizuno, Senior Engineer at Space BD, said, “I was honored to work with the satellite developers on this project. To carry a satellite equipped with a propulsion system from the manned ISS has a more stringent NASA review process to ensure the safety of the astronauts. We came together to overcome the difficulties we faced to arrive at this successful deployment.”

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