“We will create a new wave of space applications.” That’s what Craig Clark, CEO of miniature satellite manufacturer Clyde Space, said in his announcement of a new partnership with Teledyne e2v.
Clyde Space, based in Glasgow, Scotland, is providing a high-tech solution for Teledyne e2v’s vision of quantum technology commercialization. Along with research support from the University of Birmingham, the project team at Teledyne e2v is using quantum technology to devise a method for creating “cold atoms” in space. Laboratory experiments have shown that, when cooled to temperatures close to absolute zero, atoms can be used as ultra-sensitive sensors capable of mapping minute changes in the strength of gravity across the earth’s surface.
Applications include more accurate monitoring of changes in polar ice mass, ocean currents and sea level, along with the ability to monitor underground water resources and discover currently-undetectable underground natural resource deposits. The technology can also be used to aid deep-space navigation.
The Clyde Space-Teledyne e2v partnership’s Cold Atom Space Payload (CASPA) mission will be the world’s first free-flying, on-orbit demonstration for cold atom-based science missions, paving the way for cold atom instruments to be used in space.
The project is funded by Innovate UK, and also includes leading-edge technology from project partners Gooch & Housego, XCAM, Covesion and the University of Southampton. Clyde Space, a manufacturer and service provider for high-tech CubeSat/Smallsat solutions, backed by Scottish investment companies Coralinn LLP and Nevis Capital.