Finland's first satellite was finally launched after years of delays. The Aalto-2 successfully made its journey into space last Tuesday.
Finland wanted deep space exploration, as the country had its first satellite in orbit last Tuesday, YLE reported. The Aalto-2 had been successfully launched in space with only a size of a one-liter milk carton. The Finland' first satellite Aalto-2 nano was released into space along with other 37 similar devices and tons of gears through the Cygnus spacecraft.
The launching event was held at the US state of Florida. According to Phys.org, the satellite was designed and created by students in Otaniemi and was launched using the Atlas V booster rocket heading for the International Space Station.
The Cygnus will consume three days before it totally reached the ISS at the perfect time. The Aalto-2 nanosatellite was sent to take part in the International QB50 Mission which will produce the first ever comprehensive model of the thermosphere. The thermosphere is the layer located between the Earth's atmosphere and space, and with the help of the Aalto-2, its features will be revealed and studied.
Aside from the Aalto-2 nanosatellite, there are more nanosatellites launched to participate in the mission from different parts of the world. However, it's the Finland's first satellite Aalto-2, which will take part of the larger project like in Belgium.
Professor Jaan Praks commented that they have been preparing for the launch of the Aalto-2 satellite for a long time. So, people are looking forward and celebrating for the launching of the Finland's first satellite because it is considered as a historic event in Otaniemi.
Meanwhile, after it reached the space station, the ISS will release the Aalto-2 nanosatellite into space one month of the arrival of the cargo. As its orbit is the one close to the equator, the Finland's first satellite will be occasionally in contact with the station in Otaniemi.
This Finland's first satellite built in Otaniemi, the Aalto-2 nanosatellite is the first successful Finnish-built satellite despite that there has been space technology in Finland for several decades. Praks complimented, "Thanks to the cost-efficiency of small satellites, the industry is on the rise both in Finland and abroad."