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Fasat Alfa


Designation n/a / 95046A
Failed to separate from Sich 1
Launch date 31 Aug 1995 at 06:50 UT
Country of origin Chile
Operator Chilean Air Force (FACH: Fuerza Aerea de Chile)
Mission Remote sensing
Perigee/Apogee intended: 1050 km, polar orbit
Launch vehicle Cyclone 3 #114

First Chilean satellite

Investigation of the failure showed a British docking mechanism had been at fault.

The satellite carried five grams of Chilean soil on board. It was to transmit regular information on ultraviolet radiation and the ozone layer over the antarctic. It was also to image the Chilean territory and carry out educational experiments for children with informative bulletins. The other 3 experiments, which would have been regularly carried out by Fasat Alfa, would have ment working with other satellite complexes, for the transmission and storage of data and space navigation systems.

When FACH proposed the construction of the first Chilean satellite in 1993, negotiations were arranged with Mexican, U.S. and British specialists. Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL) offered the most tempting deal to the Chileans, offering joint construction of the probe, technology transfer, and postgraduate training for the FACH technicians. The satellite was built using parts built by the Chilean National Aeronautical Company (ENAER), a branch of FACH, along with space computer technology donated by the Lockheed Company of the United States for experimental purposes.

Technical data


Prime contractor SSTL
Platform UOSAT
Mass at launch 50 kg
Mass in orbit  
Dimension 70 x 36 x 36 cm
Solar array  
DC power  
Design lifetime 6 years

It has a six meters long stabilization beam with a weight in its tail which will unfold once in orbit.

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