sfl logo
University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies
Space flight laboratory
...Big Performance, Smaller Satellites

Microsatellites: M3MSat

January 25, 2014

Maritime Monitoring and Messaging Microsatellite

M3MSat-mission-patchThe Maritime Monitoring and Messaging Microsatellite (M3MSat) is intended to build upon the success of Nanosatellite Tracking of Ships (NTS), provide operational Automatic Identification System (AIS) detection for the Canadian government, and contribute to commercial ship tracking services. Ships over a certain size are required to carry AIS transponders that broadcast ship identity, location and heading. The system was originally intended for coastal monitoring and collision avoidance. The current challenge is to provide global awareness and coverage for monitoring, security, and sovereignty. Space-based AIS detection is particularly challenging given that AIS was not originally designed to deal with the large number of signal collisions that occur as a result of the much larger reception footprint from space. Attempting to receive AIS signals without further processing would result in low detection probabilities, e.g. 30% in highly congested areas of maritime traffic. COM DEV AIS receiver technology “disentangles” the colliding signals and has extremely high detection probabilities approaching 90% or better, even in the most congested areas of the globe. This provides faster, more accurate, and more complete information to end users.

M3MSat-on-vibe-table-at-DFLThe 75-kilogram M3MSat is funded by Defence R&D Canada (Ottawa), the Canadian Space Agency, and COM DEV Ltd. COM DEV is the prime contractor for the mission, and is responsible for systems engineering, AIS payload, structural design, thermal design, communications and assembly, integration and test of the satellite. SFL is the primary partner for the mission and is providing the attitude determination and control system, power system, and command and data handling system of the satellite, in addition to providing support to assembly, integration and test. The platform is designed as a continually Nadir-pointing communications platform consisting of a core spacecraft module and payload panel. The mission builds upon the fruitful collaboration between COM DEV and SFL that led to the responsive and highly successful NTS mission. NTS demonstrated the superior detection capabilities of COM DEV AIS receivers for areas of highly congested maritime traffic using SFL nanosatellite technology.

M3MSat is based on the COM DEV AIM bus design, jointly developed with SFL. The AIM bus design is a highly capable platform that exceeds the multi mission microsatellite bus (MMMB) requirements of the Canadian Space Agency. M3MSat is part of a constellation of orbiting AIS assets that will be used by exactEarth Ltd., a COM DEV spin off company, in providing global AIS coverage and data services for the international community.M3MSat-Hardware-small

SFL Developed Subsystems for M3MSat (Attitude Control, Power, Command & Data Handling)

Mission Partners

comDevrd

ngcsinclair

LATEST NEWS

Norwegian Satellites Launched Successfully and Healthy
Jul 14 2017
GHGSat Unveils Satellite Imagery
May 23 2017
Dubai Space Centre Orders Environmental Monitoring Satellite from SFL
May 16 2017
After Only One Week, CanX-7 Shows Drag Sails are Effective at Deorbiting Satellite
May 11 2017
CanX-7 Successfully Deploys Drag Sails kicking off Deorbiting Demonstration
May 04 2017
GHGSat Announces 1000th Measurement – Two Months Ahead of Schedule
Apr 07 2017
Space Flight Laboratory (SFL) Nanosatellite Validates Aircraft Tracking, Prepares for Deorbit Demo
Mar 30 2017
Space Flight Laboratory (SFL) to Develop Microsatellites for Greenhouse Gas Monitoring
Mar 24 2017
CanX-7 Aircraft Tracking and Deorbiting Demo Satellite Launched, Contacted, and Healthy
Sep 26 2016
GHGSat-D (CLAIRE) Bus Commissioning Ahead of Schedule
Jun 27 2016
M3MSat Launched and Successfully Contacted
Jun 22 2016
GHGSat-D (CLAIRE) Launches Successfully and First Contact Indicates Good Health
Jun 22 2016
Deep Space Industries and SFL selected to provide satellites for HawkEye 360’s Pathfinder mission
May 26 2016
Space Flight Laboratory (SFL) to Provide LEO Bus to SSL
May 10 2016
NORSAT-1 Launch Postponed Due to Faulty Bracket Provided by Arianespace
Apr 14 2016
BRITE-Constellation Sees Stars in a New Light
Feb 05 2016
Deep Space Industries Teams with UTIAS Space Flight Laboratory to Demonstrate Autonomous Spacecraft Maneuvering
Jan 26 2016
exactView-9 Launched Successfully and Contacted
Sep 28 2015
SFL’s Josh Newman Wins 1st Place in Small Satellite Student Competition for CanX-4 and CanX-5 Formation Flying Mission Contribution
Aug 12 2015
NORSAT-2 Contract Awarded to SFL by Norwegian Space Centre
Jul 13 2015
CanX-4&5 Formation Flying Mission Accomplished
Nov 05 2014
CanX-4 & CanX-5 Formation Flying Mission, One Month in Space
Jul 30 2014
Space Flight Laboratory Launches Five Satellites in Two Weeks
Jul 08 2014
AISSat-2 Successfully Launched
Jul 08 2014
Update on BRITE-Toronto and BRITE-Montreal
Jul 03 2014
Indian rocket successfully launches two Canadian satellites
Jun 30 2014
Two low-cost, car battery-sized Canadian space telescopes launched today
Jun 19 2014
UniBRITE and BRITE-Austria Commissioned and Operating Successfully
Feb 25 2014
Canadian Space Agency Awards Propulsion System Development Contract to SFL
Dec 02 2013
BRITE-PL1, WNISat-1, and GOMX-1 Launch Successfully
Nov 21 2013
Norwegian Space Centre Awards AISSat-3 Project to SFL
Jul 08 2013
SFL Wins Contract for First Norwegian Science Satellite – NORSAT-1
Jun 14 2013
UniBRITE Achieves Arcminute-Level Fine Pointing for First of its Kind Space Astronomy Mission
Jun 09 2013
Greenhouse Gas Monitoring Demonstration Satellite Contract Awarded
May 01 2013
Next Generation Automatic Identification System Satellites to be Developed under Communitech Program
Apr 19 2013
World's Smallest Astronomy Satellites In Orbit! (Toronto Star Article)
Feb 25 2013
Austrian BRITE Satellites Launched Successfully and Healthy! (Globe and Mail article)
Feb 25 2013
Microsatellite Science and Technology Centre (MSTC) Opens its Doors to the World
May 25 2012
Canadian Space Agency Awards Micro-mission Cluster Pilots Project to SFL
Mar 28 2012
SPACE-SI Awards NEMO-HD Contract to SFL
Dec 22 2011
Canada adds two satellites to BRITE Constellation
Jan 19 2011
AISSat-1 celebrates six months of success on-orbit, first nanosatellite with high performance pointing
Jan 12 2011
Norway signs AISSat-2 deal
Jan 06 2011
New Microsatellite Science and Technology Center (MSTC) planned for completion in late 2011
Dec 15 2010
CanX-7 Deorbiting Demonstration Mission Awarded Funding
Oct 28 2010
SFL-Built AISSat-1 Reaches Orbit and Confirmed Healthy
Jul 12 2010
CanX-2 Team wins the 2010 CASI Alouette Award
May 04 2010
UTIAS-SFL Trailblazing Small Satellite Technology (Space News)
Apr 20 2009
'Space News' Reports on "Trailblazing Small Satellite Technology" At SFL
Apr 20 2009
Rapidly Developed Ship-Tracking Satellite Approaches One Year On Orbit
Mar 02 2009
View All News Articles
© 2014 University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies Space Flight Lab. All rights reserved.