INFANTE – Microsatellite for Maritime Surveillance and Earth Observation in the context of constellations

10/SI/2016 N.°024534

The present project aims to develop and demonstrate in orbit a low-cost, modular microsatellite, as the first component of a constellation for maritime surveillance, Earth observation and communication between satellites and ground stations. The microsatellite will be equipped with a radio communications system; a propulsion system to make it possible to change the orbit; oriented solar panels and a charging bay with sensors for scientific experiments and technological validation such as SAR and multispectral camera.

Starting Date: 2017

Number of Partners: 19

Total Budget: 9.171M€

INFANTE will be the first satellite developed by the Portuguese industry, organized in a national consortium led by the TEKEVER group that includes 9 companies, which include references in the space sector such as Active Space Technologies, Omnidea, Active Aerogels, GMV, HPS and Spinworks; and 10 internationally recognized R&D centers in their areas of competence, such as CEIIA, FEUP, ISQ, FCT-UNL, INL, IPN, IPTomar, ISR Lisboa, IT Aveiro and UBI.

Based on the opportunities created by New Space and the training induced by Portuguese participation in the Space sector over the last 20 years, INFANTE will establish the basis for new lines of business associated with the sector, based on new products, services and processes, contributing to strengthening Portugal’s position in the international space panorama.

According to the planning defined for the INFANTE Project, the beginning of the project was dedicated to the definition of global operating concepts, the detailed definition of operational and technical requirements and the preliminary systems architecture, actions that are still ongoing.

UNIDEMI researchers contribute to this project with the development, implementation and pre-inspection of Orbital Linear Friction Welding (SFL) of the satellite’s fuel tanks.

Visit the project page here.