Exploring the Cosmos: AlbertaSat’s Iris Imager Team Chronicles Their Journey

In the vast realm of satellite design and space exploration, AlbertaSat’s Iris Imager team stands out as a group of passionate individuals led by the dynamic Yeh-In Keng. As a fifth-year Engineering Physics Nano Trad student, Yeh-In is not just a dedicated member; he’s the co-lead of the Iris Imager team, steering the ship alongside Dipesh Aggarwal.

Embarking on a Stellar Adventure

Yeh-In’s journey with AlbertaSat began in the spring of 2021, sparked by a friend who painted the club as remarkably approachable. The allure of contributing to space exploration and the excitement of launching something into the great unknown drew Yeh-In into the world of AlbertaSat.

The Iris Imager Odyssey

Currently at the helm of the Iris Imager team with Dipesh, Yeh-In oversees the mechanical and optics aspects of the design. This role showcases his versatility and hands-on approach to tackling the complexities of building a satellite.

Simplifying Satellite Design

Contrary to common belief, Yeh-In simplifies satellite design, emphasizing its surprising approachability. All that’s required, he suggests, is an interest in a subsystem and a willingness to invest time. Building a satellite, it turns out, is more about passion than rocket science.

Navigating Challenges in the Cosmos

For Yeh-In, the biggest challenge within AlbertaSat lies in the open-ended nature of designing a payload. Determining the scope and specifications demands meticulous research and the ability to justify design choices—a true testament to him and the club’s engineering abilities.

Beyond the Lab: Education and Outreach

Yeh-In isn’t just about satellite design; he’s actively involved in educational outreach. At the Jasper DarkSky festival, he conducts classroom sessions for K-12 students, sharing the wonders of space exploration in both English and French.

Charting Future Trajectories

Looking forward, Yeh-In and the Iris Imager team are set to double down on optics design, with the ambitious goal of having a functional imager ready to go by Fall 2024.

Collaboration in AlbertaSat

Collaboration is key to AlbertaSat’s success. The Iris team seamlessly interacts with various other teams, from mechanical and mission design to ADCS (Attitude Determination and Control System) and software, ensuring a holistic approach to their satellite’s development.

Testing and Simulating 

Testing and simulations play a vital role in AlbertaSat’s endeavors. Yeh-In’s team relies on optical simulations in Zemax and finite element analysis in Ansys, where expertise from members Nabiha and Shalini shines.

Environmental Stewardship

AlbertaSat doesn’t just look to the stars; they also aim to contribute to Earth. By using the imager to collect data on snow coverage and sea ice in northern Canada, the team hopes to aid researchers studying climate change.

Skills Evolved: Engineering Beyond the Cosmos

Being part of AlbertaSat has transformed Yeh-In into a well-rounded engineer. The transition from a solo maker to a team player involved in design reviews and collaborative paperwork has honed skills that go beyond the technical realm.

In conclusion, Yeh-In Keng and the AlbertaSat Iris Imager team are on an exhilarating journey into the cosmos, fueled by curiosity, innovation, and a love for exploration. As they continue to push boundaries, their story invites us all to look up and dream of what lies beyond.