"Greek minds at Work:" this is the new slogan that one encounters when visiting the Lambda Team’s official website. Lambda Team is a group composed of Greek scientists and students that aims at helping Greece to acquire its own position in the global aerospace industry.
The team leader, who is Mr. Periklis Papadopoulos, is the one who created “Λ-Sat,” which is the first satellite constructed by a Greek scientist. “Λ-Sat” was named after the name of the development group, and is now in orbit around Earth. On July 13th the satellite was on the Cygnus spacecraft, which launched with the final destination of the International Space Station (ISS). The station astronauts were responsible for putting the satellite into orbit.
“Λ-sat” is a small satellite that has two-way communication technology and soil systems for operational purposes. The satellite has an AIS receiver in order to monitor vessels, which are in its scope, and its basic use is to identify, in real time, the coordination of Greek commercial ships and provide direct communication with these ships’ captains.
At the same time, however, the satellite carries out a new scientific experiment that aims at measuring the effect of the radiation on grapheme, under normal operating conditions, in low orbit around Earth. Graphene is a widely used material that is used in nanotechnology applications.
The Greek Team
The most interesting part of “Λ-sat” is, of course, that it has been designed and constructed entirely by a Greek team. The leader of this group is Periklis Papadopoulos, who is well-known in the international scientific community and has participated in several NASA missions, as for example in the successful entry of “Curiosity” robot into the Martian atmosphere.
Lambda Team has its headquarters in Silicon Valley, in northern California, but during the design of “Λ-sat” they cooperated with people from San Jose (USA), New York, Athens, London, Paris and other parts of the world. Six Greek students participated in the “Λ-sat” project, aged from 25 years old and younger.
“Λ-sat” is the first example of Greek scientists’ possibilities. In this case, we are talking about scientists who are involved in the space industry. Despite the fact that it is now widely known, currently there are Greek companies that are active in this specific field. A few years ago the Greek Clusters Space Technology and Applications (si-Cluster) was created, in which more than 30 companies participated, including large companies and startups.
“si-Cluster” aims to create an ecosystem in our country that is going to be able to produce and provoke research, development and entrepreneurship, so that Greece can compete in space at a European and international level.
As far as research concerning space and applications are concerned, Greece has Mr. Papadopoulos as it’s trump card. The Greek professor has suggested the creation of a space research center in an area close to Kalamata, Greece. This center would be used for special aircraft flights to the outer space. Mr. Papadopoulos suggested that this project could be founded by private capitals and would help in the so-called “space tourism” development of the southwest Peloponnese.
Are there any similar space industry innovations occurring where you live?
Original article, originally published in Greek, here.
Credits: Images and Data linked to sources.