Satellite Data Exercises
- Data Exercise 1:
The polar orbit of our satellites means that the spacecraft continually
move from night into day. By observing the variation in KITSAT's solar
cell voltage, the orbital period of the satellite can be easily measured.
- Data Exercise 2: Satellite Barbeque
Yes, we BBQ our satellites! In this exercise you will study the controlled
rotation of KITSAT by looking at the periodicity of the Earth's magnetic
field sensed by the spacecraft. The satellite turns slowly in the
sun to maintain an even surface temperature.
- Data Exercise 3: Inclination Angle
At the equator the sun's rays are not exactly perpendicular to the
surface of the Earth. In this exercise you can measure this angle
directly from the intensity of light incident on the satellite.
- Data Exercise
4: Solar Proton Activity
What can we learn from PoSat's observations of solar protons?
Use of the Messages from Space graphing tool:
All the exercises listed here use real satellite data which have been
previously downloaded from one of Surrey's spacecraft. Within each exercise
click on the
icon to display the data and a plot window will automatically open within
your browser. If you have a slow network connection you may have to
wait a few
seconds for the data file to be transferred.
The graphing window initially shows the complete data set, for which
the Y-axis is already scaled into meaningful units described in the
axis label. If you want to
zoom in on one region of the data simply left-click and drag the mouse
over the region of interest. You can repeatedly zoom into a region to
look more closely
at the plot - or right-click to zoom back out. Several zoom buttons
are provided at the bottom of the graph to allow other zoom options.
To export the visible graph data to your own file, click on the View
Visible Data button. This opens a new window containing the data that
you can then Select
and Copy (control-C under Windows) into Wordpad or your own favourite
text editor. From your text editor, save the file to disk and you can
then import it
into Excel or any other graphing package for off-line analysis.