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Deutsch Intern
    Chair of Computer Science VII - Robotics and Telematics

    UWE-3 News

    Since 21st of November 2013 UWE‑3 performs very well in space and is celebrating its 5th birthday in orbit today. But wait – there’s more to come: UWE‑3 is awaiting UWE‑4 in space! Presumably on the 25th of December 2018 UWE‑4 will be launched from Vostochny Cosmodrome, Russia.

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    On 21st of November 2017 UWE-3 celebrated 4 years in space and is still running without any significant failures. The daily received UWE-3 beacons report its good health condition, including the nominal status of the batteries.

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    UWE-3 Status Report

    05/23/2016

    On 21st of May UWE-3 celebrated 2.5 years in space without any significant failures. Batteries, EPS, OBC and ADCS are fine, nevertheless we were confronted with a minor problem with one of the radios UWE-3 autonomously recovered from. Since then UWE-3 is in a very stable condition again. Some weeks ago we have re-initiated operations with UWE-3 on an interim basis.

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    In the beginning of February 2015 we uploaded new software images for all UWE-3 subsystems to the satellite, which comprise in total 3 images on 9 micro-controllers. This software was installed thereafter and is since then successfully operational on UWE-3. The software update targeted major improvements for the attitude control of the satellite, which was the focus of tests right after the update.

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    Since the temporary end of UWE-3 operations two months ago we received great support from the HAM community all over the world observing the health state of our satellite. For this reason and this reason alone we can say today UWE-3 is still experiencing a very good health state with fully charge batteries in a safe temperature area.

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    Today, more than one year after launch, there will be a temporary end-of-operations caused by the end of funding. However, UWE-3 is in a very good health condition with fully charged batteries and operations may be continued depending on future research plans.

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    From beginning of UWE-3 operations the downlink quality from the satellite to ground was excellent, showing high signal strengths even at low elevations. However, the telecommand uplink was initially difficult showing temporarily significant transmission failure rates. From beginning of 2014 the uplink quality degraded even further.

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    This week we successfully updated the flight software on the On-Board-Computer (OBC) of UWE-3. The redundant OBC of UWE-3 is capable to receive, store and flash software-updates while the satellite itself stays fully functional. After transmitting the software to UWE-3 we flashed the redundant microcontroller via the JTAG EEM cross connection and toggled the satellite to the controller running the new software.

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    Today we’re celebrating UWE-3 “Six months in Space” with a highlight created out of the on-board ADCS data recorded. Already in January the satellite obtained a precise attitude determination after in-orbit calibration of the magnetometers. With this, we have now compiled a graphical demonstration of its movement during a pass over Wuerzburg.

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    Since launch we received great support from radio amateurs all around the world, which sent us beacon files via e-mail or uploaded them to our ftp-server. More than 6.000 Beacon frames have been collected from the radio amateur community, growing daily.

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