Memorial University students to build space satellite

Memorial University is one of 15 chosen by the Canadian Space Agency to take part in a new program.

The university has received a $200K grant for work over the next 4 years

Desmond Power and Weimin Huang are leading the project at Memorial University. ( Rich Blenkinsopp)

Engineering students at Memorial University have been given a $200,000 grant to build a space satellite.

The money comes from the Canadian Space Agency through a new national student space initiative, the CubeSat Project.

Memorial is one of 15 university teams chosen to participate in the four-year project.

Students will build a breadbox-sized satellite and launch it from the International Space Station in 2020-21.

"This is an opportunity for post-secondary students to work on a real space mission from start to finish, including operating the satellites and conducting science experiments in space," MUN said in a news release Friday.

This is an example of the type of satellite that could be built under the CubeSat Project. (NASA)

Weimin Huang, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at Memorial, and Desmond Power, vice-president, remote sensing, C-CORE, are the principal investigators.

Huang said the miniature satellite will measure sea ice parameters from space and augment the remote sensing capacity already developed at MUN.

"This will be the very first Earth observation satellite built in this province," said Power, who added the project should help convince young engineers there is a future in aerospace systems in the province.