TubeSat Personal Spacecraft - Launch your own spacecraft for USD-8000. Now there are no more excuses why your grad-school thesis can’t include data collected from your own spacecraft anymore. Want your own webserver in orbit? A spy-satellite for capturing video to prove that alien invasion theory? Small satellite company Interorbital has got you covered:
Planet Earth has entered the age of the Personal Satellite with the introduction of Interorbital’s TubeSat Personal Satellite (PS) Kit. The IOS TubeSat PS Kit is the low-cost alternative to the CubeSat. It has three-quarters of the mass (0.75-kg or 1.65-lb) and volume of a CubeSat, but still offers plenty of room for most experiments or applications. And, best of all, the price of the TubeSat kit includes the price of a launch into Low-Earth-Orbit on an IOS NEPTUNE 9 (N9) launch vehicle.
Since the TubeSats are placed into self-decaying orbits 310 kilometers (192 miles) above the Earth’s surface, they do not contribute to the long-term build-up of orbital debris. After operating for a several weeks (the exact length of time on orbit is dependent on solar activity), they will safely re-enter the atmosphere and burn-up. TubeSats are designed to be orbit-friendly. Launches are expected to begin in 2012.