back to article Launch your own satellite for only eight grand

Interorbital Systems is offering your own orbiting satellite for only $8,000, including launch, though evil geniuses might balk at the expected 2-week lifespan before a fiery re-entry. The plan is to launch 32 of the diminutive TubeSats into low earth orbit, around 310Km up, using a single Neptune 30 launcher (under development …

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Anonymous Coward

Very nice (strokes fluffy white cat)

Sat here in my dug out volcano, I have to say this is interesting. And while two weeks may seem little, it is really more than enough time to threaten the UN with my ray gun for....... One million dollars!!!!!

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P.A.R.I.S.

Perfect for launching paper planes!

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Linux

All this talk about birds

makes me think about getting a 12-bore...

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Coat

Ashes

So how long before the first person ashes are scatter in space?

Cant think of any other novel use...

Mine the one with the unopened Idiots guide to being an evil genius in it.

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Happy

Awesome!

Anyone fancy chipping in so I can send a poo into space?

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Flame

Sounds like fun...

...and, at the end of the orbit, you can hopefully watch your $8,000 burn up.

Flame, because, well...it's obvious.

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h 6
Happy

maybe

Maybe the UK can put a wedge of cheese in one and let it orbit for a couple of weeks...

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Terminator

Purchase 4 tubes

Just purchase 4 tubes (allowed), use the electronics module in one, and the rest of the bird for your evil genius payload (0.5*3 +0,2*4 ) = 2.3kg max payload.

Install a ion engine in one and 2 x 700gr metal lumps in the other two, and you can attack 2 targets, whenever you want.

With the ion engine you can use the solar power to displace the bird & get to upper orbits without a lot of fuel mass, and if velocity is high enough, you could deploy a ramscoop, because of the lot of matter that will be floating so near to earth. Energy will be chaep with the solar panels, albeit with a limited power.

Of course you can just leave the metal lumps out and pack more fuel and/or welectronics, and drive ti to the moon/mars/the sun/wherever you want.

AC just in case someone does it.

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Joke

Great

Now you can put the Reg paper plane into orbit.

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Irp

Vulture 2 ?

So will El Reg be following up their balloon launch with an orbital mission ?

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FAIL

Flying hams?

Don't Interorbital Systems realise that there's a couple of dozen amateur radio satellites up there already - and are staying up there for a while yet (the shuttle dropped off another 4 on July 30th)?

BTW the 'Amateur Radio on the International Space Station' (ARISS) frequences are 145.80 MHz down & 145.20 MHz uplink (in Europe).

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Coat

Somewhat serious comment

Anyone consider the implications for a small 'suitcase' nuke as the payload. Electromagnetic pulse to wipe out the world's infrastructure. Scary stuff.

Mine's the one with the attached tin-foil hoodie.

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Damn...

Just the other day I was moaning about how expensive it was to launch things into orbit. Now I guess I have no excuse for not taking over at least a small island in the south pacific.

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Silver badge

Control System?

Wonder if you could fit a tiny propulsion system in one? If you could, you could crash it into other people's satellites - personally I'd aim for the ones that broadcast cable companies use.

Neat idea though, and really cheap considering.

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@ James 12

"So how long before the first person ashes are scatter in space?"

It's already been done. Gene Roddenberry (of Star Trek fame) was one of the first.

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Thats so cool!

I have no idea how I could/would use this, but the idea is fantastic!

The pure geekery(ary?) of it all, and the fact its even possible for a pretty reasonable amount, well that's just fantastically cool!

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Anonymous Coward

hmmmm

Anyone have a working ion drive that will fit into less than 1 liter? minus at least 10 kW of solar panels, radio equipment, reaction mass (how much of that do we need?) etc.?

AC because I'm probably still missing some huge point

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The future

Between this and the flying motorcycle, we can finally say its here.

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Big Brother

200g payload

A small potato weighs about 200g.

Small suitcase nuke? EMP? With 200g of fissile material? What is that, about a thimble full?

Looks to me like the canisters are sealed, so ion propulsion or anything else that needs access to the outside is probably a no go. If you can make a small potato sized thing open the can and then head for the moon you are better than an evil genius.

If you use two cans, then you're up to nearly a kilo of payload, but (obviously) that'll cost you $16K and your gadget will still have to cut itself out.

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Could I...

Put a laser weapon in one? or maybe some missiles? Even just heavy objects with sufficient heat shielding not to be destroyed in the atmosphere and sufficient mass to make a small crater of my target?

Just wondering, you know...

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Go

EVERYONE CHIP A FIVER IN...

And we can have El-Reg being broadcast from space in no time...

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Grenade

@ Marty McFly

13.5cm long, 8.7cm diameter. That'd be a suitcase even smaller than mine.

O

You could get a hand grenade in there

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Joke

@Ian Ferguson

What? So it can be burned up in the atmosphere on reentry? And you expect us to *pay* for the privilege of potentially inhaling your vapourised excrement?

There's a two word answer involving sex and travel for this one.......

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Flame

200g payload only

I'm sending up 200g of tungsten, that might even survive re-entry.

Watch out.

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Alien

a way home

just need to break free of gravity....see my name......

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Bronze badge

@Marty McFly

And how would you propose to build a nuclear weapon within the weight limits imposed? If you can do that then you're a genuine evil genius.

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A real idea!

This is in the right price range that people like LEAs and universitys could afford to do this. Get Students to disign an experiment and get them doing some real science.

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Irp

@AC Re Flying Hams

At least two of the 4 satellites "dropped off" by the Shuttle carry beacons only, rather than transponders. A lot of these satellites just "use" Amateur Radio frequencies and beacon their data and telemetry down, rather than serve as a transponder that you can communicate thru

There aren't actually all that many Amateur Radio *transponder* (or FM repeater) satellites up there and operational these days: AO-7, AO-51, FO-29, and VO-52 come to mind. Most are in Low Earth Orbit, thus have fairly short passes, and relatively small footprints (AO-7 being the exception)

To be honest, unless some micro propulsion could be added to one of these tubesats to raise the orbit, and keep it in space more than "a few weeks", I don't see that much use for them from an Amateur Radio perspective.

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FAIL

Or

You could fill it with 32 tubes of frickin' baby sharks with frickin' laser beams attached to their frickin' heads, admittedly not my best though out plan but it sounded good if only briefly.

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Paris Hilton

GPS carnage anyone?

Mine's the one spouting fake GPS info to all those idiots who can't live without it.....

....Mwuhahahahahahaha

Paris....because I'll bet she loves multiple loads being ejected at regular intervals.

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Hmmm....

Plague. See if it survives the radiation outside of the Earth's magnetosphere or if it mutates into a new, more resistant strain that can survive re-entry.

Would you be able to recover the payload or will the whole shebang be destroyed returning to Earth?

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Flame

Payload

200g of ball bearings might make a spectacular meteorite shower on re-entry?

Look Martha, aliens!

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Pirate

Kinetic

So... what I need is a ceramic-encased, superheavy material that will survive the burnup of the outer Tubesat... Oh yeah, and 8 grand.

Lasers are for wimps who think precision is cool, kinetic weapons are for those who wish to make a real impact!

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