Latest Space News
Thu, 25 Aug 2016 01:00:00 +0100
An Ariane 5, operated by Arianespace, has delivered two telecom satellites, Intelsat-33e and Intelsat-36, into their planned orbits. Liftoff of flight VA232 occurred on 24 August at 22:16 GMT (19:16 local time, 00:16 CEST on 25 August) from Europe's Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. Intelsat-33e, with a mass at liftoff of 6600 kg and mounted in the upper position atop Ariane's Sylda dual-payload carrier inside the fairing, was the first to be released about 28 minutes into the mission. ...
Tue, 23 Aug 2016 16:00:00 +0100
When it comes to transmitting sensitive information in highly contested areas, the Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) system and Milstar satellites are proving their value, achieving 100 years of combined successful operations. Designed as a protected, global network, the first Milstar launched in 1994 aboard a Titan IV rocket. Since then, the constellation has served as a critical resource for troops and national leaders in delivering secure and reliable communications. In 2010, the fi...
Mon, 22 Aug 2016 14:00:00 +0100
Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has been awarded a contract from OHB System AG to supply the space inertial reference system for Germany's SARah satellite-based radar reconnaissance system. Northrop Grumman will supply its Scalable Space Inertial Reference Unit-L (Scalable SIRU(tm)-L) for sensor pointing/stabilization and attitude control on the SARah satellite-based radar reconnaissance system. This contract marks the first international application of the new Scalable SIRU(tm)-L con...
Mon, 22 Aug 2016 09:37:00 +0100
Every 18 months or so, scientists and sensation-seekers gather at set points on Earth's surface, to await awe-inspiring solar eclipses. The Moon briefly blocks the Sun, revealing its mysterious outer atmosphere, the corona. Though what if researchers could induce such eclipses at will? That's the scientific vision behind ESA's double-satellite Proba-3, the world's first precision formation-flying mission, planned for launch in 2019. An 'occulter' satellite will fly 150 m ahead of a second...
Fri, 19 Aug 2016 16:46:00 +0100
Orbital ATK, a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, announced today that two satellites the company designed, built and tested for the U.S. Air Force were successfully deployed following their launch aboard a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Delta IV rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, on August 19, 2016. The satellites were the third and fourth for the Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program (GSSAP) and comprise Air Force Space Command Mission Number Si...
Fri, 19 Aug 2016 13:51:00 +0100
A United Launch Alliance (ULA) Delta IV rocket carrying the AFSPC-6 mission for the United States Air Force lifted off from Space Launch Complex-37 Aug. 19 at 12:52 a.m. EDT. This is ULA's seventh launch in 2016 and the 110th successful launch since the company was formed in December 2006. "Thank you to the ULA, Air Force and industry partners for the outstanding teamwork and flawless execution that made today's mission a success," said Laura Maginnis, ULA vice president of Custom Services. "...
Thu, 18 Aug 2016 10:34:00 +0100
An ESA tracking station has acquired signals from the international Cassini spacecraft orbiting Saturn, across more than 1.4 billion km of space. Following a seven-year journey to Saturn, the NASA/ESA/ASI Cassini orbiter delivered Europe's Huygens probe to the surface of Saturn's mysterious moon Titan in January 2005, just a few months after becoming the first spacecraft to enter orbit around the giant gas planet. Since then, Cassini and Huygens have returned a wealth of information on the...
Wed, 17 Aug 2016 21:06:00 +0100
NASA is preparing to launch its first mission to return a sample of an asteroid to Earth. The mission will help scientists investigate how planets formed and how life began, as well as improve our understanding of asteroids that could impact Earth. The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) spacecraft will travel to the near-Earth asteroid Bennu and bring a sample back to Earth for intensive study. Launch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. E...
Wed, 17 Aug 2016 11:28:00 +0100
The miniature satellites known as CubeSats already play a variety of roles in space. In future they could also serve as the building blocks of other, larger missions by being docked together in orbit. CubeSats are nanosatellites of standardised dimensions based on multiple 10-cm-sided cubes, which ESA is employing for both educational and technology-demonstration purposes. "The ability to autonomously rendezvous and dock CubeSats could enable in-orbit assembly of larger structures that sim...
Tue, 16 Aug 2016 20:00:00 +0100
Astro Aerospace, a Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) company, has completed the preliminary design review (PDR) of the AstroMesh(r) radar antenna reflector for the NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar (NISAR) satellite. The antenna reflector, furnished by Astro Aerospace, is part of the NISAR L-band synthetic aperture radar managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Scheduled to launch in 2021, NISAR will be the first radar imaging satellite to use dual L-Band and S-Band frequencies, pr...
Tue, 16 Aug 2016 08:34:00 +0100
Dark matter, the mysterious substance that constitutes most of the material universe, remains as elusive as ever. Although experiments on the ground and in space have yet to find a trace of dark matter, the results are helping scientists rule out some of the many theoretical possibilities. Three studies published earlier this year, using six or more years of data from NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, have broadened the mission's dark matter hunt using some novel approaches. &...
Mon, 15 Aug 2016 15:00:00 +0100
Space Systems Loral (SSL), a leading provider of innovative satellites and spacecraft systems, today announced that a satellite designed and built for SKY Perfect JSAT Corporation , a leading satellite operator based in Japan , was launched on Saturday night and is successfully performing post-launch maneuvers according to plan. The satellite, JCSAT-16, deployed its solar arrays on schedule following the SpaceX Falcon 9 launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida . JCSAT-16, which wi...
Fri, 12 Aug 2016 08:31:00 +0100
A pioneering Earth observation satellite for Peru has made initial contact with launcher hardware as PerúSAT-1 completes its fit-check in preparation for a September 16 liftoff from French Guiana aboard an Arianespace Vega launch vehicle. The fit-check is a regular milestone during mission preparations at Arianespace’s Spaceport launch site in French Guiana, verifying the physical matchup of a payload with the hardware that serves as its interface when integrated on the launche...
Thu, 11 Aug 2016 11:00:00 +0100
Schiaparelli, the Entry, Descent and Landing Demonstrator Module of the joint ESA/Roscosmos ExoMars 2016 mission, will target the Meridiani Planum region for its October landing, as seen in this mosaic created from Mars Express images. The landing ellipse, measuring 100 x 15 km, is located close to the equator, in the southern highlands of Mars. The region was chosen based on its relatively flat and smooth characteristics, as indicated in the topography map, in order to satisfy landing safety...
Wed, 10 Aug 2016 22:33:00 +0100
Today global technology leader Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT), the UAE Space Agency and Mubadala launched a space-based workforce training program to develop emerging leaders in the UAE space industry. Generation Space: The Space Fundamentals Training Program for early career professionals across the UAE aerospace industry will run for the next four months and includes training in the UAE and the United States. The program begins in the UAE with training in "space foundations" and moves into mor...
Wed, 10 Aug 2016 13:25:00 +0100
A new micro-size cryocooler from Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) is enabling quick-startup infrared (IR) sensors for missile and sensor applications. Cryocoolers are standard components in IR-sensing platforms, from space observation to weapons targeting, and this new highly-compact product enables faster activation and smaller packaging. "The Fast Cool Down Microcryocooler makes sure our military can have rapid-reaction systems, from missile to passive sensor applications," said Dr. Jeffrey Olso...
Wed, 10 Aug 2016 12:00:00 +0100
The small smattering of bright blue stars in the upper left of this vast new 615 megapixel ESO image is the perfect cosmic laboratory in which to study the life and death of stars. Known as Messier 18 this star cluster contains stars that formed together from the same massive cloud of gas and dust. This image, which also features red clouds of glowing hydrogen and dark filaments of dust, was captured by the VLT Survey Telescope (VST) located at ESO's Paranal Observatory in Chile. Messier 18 w...
Tue, 9 Aug 2016 23:55:00 +0100
NASA has selected six U.S. companies to help advance the Journey to Mars by developing ground prototypes and concepts for deep space habitats. Through the public-private partnerships enabled by the Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships-2 (NextSTEP-2) Broad Agency Announcement, Appendix A, NASA and industry partners will expand commercial development of space in low-Earth orbit while also improving deep space exploration capabilities to support more extensive human spaceflight m...
Tue, 9 Aug 2016 23:30:00 +0100
Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) successfully deployed the Enhanced Polar System (EPS) Control and Planning Segment (CAPS) hardware in December 2015 to operational sites at Clear Air Force Station (CAFS), Alaska and Schriever Air Force Base (SAFB), Colorado - paving the way for System Acceptance Testing in the spring of 2017. The U.S. Air Force's EPS provides secure, jam-resistant satellite communications coverage to users in the North Polar region to support national objectives. CAPS ...
Mon, 8 Aug 2016 19:30:00 +0100
Southern Research was awarded a 5-year sole source contract renewal from NASA in the amount of $9.95 million to provide continued support of the Airborne Imaging and Recording System (AIRS) used on WB-57 research aircraft for more than a decade. This is the second sole source contract received by the Birmingham -based non-profit organization for work on this unique high altitude research program. The first was granted in 2011 for a total value of $28.5 million . Southern Research began workin...
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  • CV: Final year PhD student (+ Research Officer at University of Bath)

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    Personal information
     Name:<withheld>
     Age:<withheld>
     Country:<withheld>
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    Contact information
     Email:<withheld>
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    Candidate Profile
     Date Submitted:02-01-2010
     Last Modified:11-12-2014 (07:59)
    Job information
     Current job:Final year PhD student (+ Research Officer at University of Bath)
     Employment Term:Either
     Job location:Anywhere
     Date available:within 3months
     Industry:Civil Agencies/International Organizations, Satellite Manufacturers and Subcontractors, Satellite Operators, , , Launch Systems, Business Services
     Keywordsnumerate, experience in R&D engineering, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL, UK), University of Bath (UK) satellite payload development, instrumentation, GPS for remote applications, Anglo-Australian Observatory (AAO, Australia), autonomous fibre positi
    CV

    Career Interests

    I am very keen in working on spacecraft design & build, and related instrumentation. My experience during my PhD included the development of a GPS receiver-based payload (TOPCAT) for plasmaspheric science installed in UK Space Agency’s pilot CubeSat – UKube-1. I took the primary role in all stages of payload development, managing the project from design through to space qualification tests. Design and build of TOPCAT required various aspects of hardware/software, RF and mechanical engineering skills.

     

    EDUCATION

     

    2011-Current

    University of Bath, UK

    PhD Research Programme in Electronic and Electrical Engineering

    Thesis Title: Topside Ionosphere/Plasmasphere Tomography using Space-Borne Dual Frequency GPS Receivers

    The project installed a GPS L1/L2 receiver within the CubeSat UKube-1 to measure the total electron content on the topside ionosphere and beyond. The payload was a feasibility study of technology and cost to implement a constellation of GPS receivers for continuous global monitoring of the region. The project will also validate a MATLAB-based ionospheric tomography algorithm for the topside ionosphere/plasmasphere, enabling the first phase of a complete system for global ionised upper atmospheric imaging. During my PhD I also assisted teaching academics with practical laboratories for undergraduate students and provided informal supervision to postgraduate students.

     

     

    2005-2010

    University of Bath, UK

    MEng (Hons) Electronics with Space Science andTechnology with Industrial Placement - First-Class Honours (Average: 85.2%)

    Significant Projects Undertaken:

    (1) Group Business and Design Project (GBDP) to produce a business proposal and design a Loran receiver module – Included a Needs Analysis/Target Specification, Feasibility Study, Business Plan and Technical Detailed Design. Each team member was required to assume roles of a manager and engineer. I was the Operations Manager in charge of product operation procedures, and managing capital resources.

     

    (2) Final Year Individual Project (FYP) on the design of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) flight controller – Included research into project specifications and design alternatives, leading to the final proposal of the design.

    Other Modules Include: Communication, Remote Sensing & Satellite Navigation Systems, Microprocessors & Digital Electronics, Space Electronics & Vehicles/Platforms

     

     

    2002-2005

    Stafford International School, Sri Lanka

     

    4 Grade As – Physics, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry

     

    WORK EXPERIENCE

     

    2014-Current

    Research Officer at the University of Bath

    Working with a Spirent GPS simulator to characterize the behavior of GPS receivers in the presence of ionospheric scintillation, with specific interest on aviation receivers that will be used for safety critical applications. Supervision of undergraduate and postgraduate students on projects related to the Spirent simulator.

     

    Summer

    2009, 2010

    Student Fellow at the Australian Astronomical Observatory, Australia

    I was awarded three-month (2009) and six-month (2010) student fellowships to develop a control system for a self-motile fiber positioning system to transport payloads across a field plate in large telescopes. Gained experience in digital image processing and control/operation of mini robotic systems using LabVIEW. Included characterization of operating parameters and simulations via MATLAB to model the motion of the robots.

     

    2007-2008

    Industrial Placement – STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratories

    Worked as a member of a R&D team to simulate/design a vertex detector for the International Linear Collider (ILC). Tasks included optimization of detector designs through performance analysis of different sensor technologies.

     

     

    PUBLICATIONS/CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS

     

    T. Pinto Jayawardena, C. Mitchell, R.J. Watson, J.R. Rose, C.J. Coleman and M. Jessop, “TOPCAT: A Space-Borne Dual-Frequency GPS Receiver for Topside Ionosphere and Plasmasphere Computer Assisted Tomography.” Proceedings of ION GNSS+ 2014, Tampa, Florida, USA, 8-12 September 2014. (In preparation)

     

    T. Pinto Jayawardena, A.M. Ali, Biagio Forte, J. Kinrade, C. Mitchell, S. Smith and  T. Walter, “Experimentally Recorded Amplitude and Phase Scintillation Through a Spirent Simulator.” Proceedings of ION GNSS+ 2014, Tampa, Florida, USA, 8-12 September 2014. (In preparation)

     

    Talini S. Pinto Jayawardena, Cathryn N. Mitchell, Robert J. Watson, Julian R. Rose, Christopher J. Coleman and Mark Jessop, “TOPCAT: A Dual-Frequency GPS Payload on UKube-1.” The International Beacon Satellite Symposium 2013, Bath, UK, 8-12 July 2013. (Presentation)

     

    Pinto Jayawardena, T., Mitchell, C.N., Watson, R.J., et al. “Topside ionosphere computer assisted tomography using a dual frequency GPS receiver and cubesat technology.”Proceedings of 3rd International colloquium on scientific and fundamental aspects of the Galileo programme, Copenhagen, Denmark, 31 August – 2 September 2011.

     

    David Bailey, Erik Devetak, Mark Grimes, Kristian Harder, Sonja Hillert, David Jackson, T. Pinto Jayawardena et al. "The LCFIVertex package: Vertexing, flavour tagging and vertex charge reconstruction with an ILC vertex detector." Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment 610, no. 2 (2009): 573-589.

     

    Zhang, Z., et al. "Charge shielding in the In-situ Storage Image Sensor for a vertex detector at the ILC." Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment 607.3 (2009): 538-543.

     

    ACHIEVEMENTS AND AWARDS

     

    2011-2014

    The University Research Studentship for overseas candidates, awarded by the University of Bath for graduate studies in the PhD research programme.

     

    2010

    The IET Prize by the Institution of Engineering and Technology for distinction in studies leading to the degree of MEng (Hons) Electronic Engineering with Space Science and Technology; The IQE Prize awarded by IQE plc for best examination results in optical devices and communication systems.

     

    2007-2009

    2005-2006

    John Barr Memorial Scholarship from Schlumberger, and Undergraduate Residence Scholarship awarded by the University of Bath based on academic excellence.

     

    1998-2003

    Five years of distinction or merit certificates in Practical and Theory Music (Piano)

     

    ADDITIONAL SKILLS

     

     

    Technical

     

    In addition to Microsoft Office (Word, Excel and PowerPoint), I’m competent in the technical software MATLAB and C programming. Grounding knowledge in Verilog Hardware Description Language (HDL) for use with FPGAs, and LabVIEW

     

    Teaching

    (Voluntary)

     

    Taught English to grades 8-10 at the School for the Blind, Ratmalana, Sri Lanka. I was responsible for both the physical and psychological well-being of students with multiple disabilities. Improved my project planning and team work skills by assisting in the Canada project for disabled children.

     

    Languages

     

    English (Mother Tongue - Fluent); Sinhala (Native Language - Fluent); French (Basic)

     

    INTERESTS

     

    Music

    Both listening to and playing the piano. Enjoy Classical, Celtic and Instrumental music.

     

    Travel

    Interest in other cultures, nature, historical places and meeting people from different walks of life.

     

    Sports

    I swim and play squash as leisure sports. I am also a Jiu Jitsu enthusiast (novice).

     

    REFERENCES (Further references on request)

     

    Prof. Cathryn Mitchell (Supervisor)

    Dept. of Electronic & Electrical Engineering

    University of Bath, Bath BA2 7AY, UK

    E-mail: C.N.Mitchell(at)bath.ac.uk

    Dr. Kristian Harder (Industrial Supervisor)

    STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory

    Harwell Science and Innovation Campus

    Didcot OX11 0QX, UK Email: kristian.harder(at)stfc.ac.uk



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