The World’s first wooden satellite is all set to be launched into orbit by the end of 2021. The environment-friendly satellite is in the shape of the Finnish WISA Woodsat.
The satellite will be launched as a part of the environment-friendly space exploration test project.
The environment-friendly satellite will help the European Space Agency (ESA) to check the potential of the material in space.
The project under which this wooden satellite will be launch into orbit aims to see if it is possible to build a space state or spacecraft out of wood in the future.
The Woodsat which measures 10cm along each side is a Cubesat. It weighs 1 kilogram, in which the surface panel made of plywood is also included.
Finnish writer and broadcaster Jari Makinen who is also head of a company called Arctic Astronauts have taken this initiative. His company, Arctic Astronauts, sells replica CubeSats to space hobbyists and educational institutions.
The Woodsat will get two cameras, LED light, sensors and a quartz crystal microbalance.
“The base material for plywood is birch, and we’re using basically just the same as you’d find in a hardware store or to make furniture,” Samuli Nyman, the chief engineer of Woodsat and co-founder of Arctic Astronautics co-founder, said.
“The main difference is that ordinary plywood is too humid for space uses, so we place our wood in a thermal vacuum chamber to dry it out. Then we also perform atomic layer deposition, adding a very thin aluminum oxide layer – typically used to encapsulate electronics. This should minimize any unwanted vapors from the wood, known as ‘outgassing’ in the space field, while also protecting against the erosive effects of atomic oxygen. We’ll also be testing other varnishes and lacquers on some sections of the wood,“ he added.