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Student-led ‘beach ball’ space antenna aims to boost cubesat communications

Students at the University of Arizona have constructed a cubesat to demonstrate what they hope will be the answer to high-speed, low-cost space communication and data transmission for small satellites. 

The two-toned antenna, serving credence to the communication device’s beach ball comparison, will launch in a stowed and folded configuration. Once in Earth orbit, the antenna will inflate using a combination of helium and argon, increasing its initial surface area to provide increased downlink speeds. 

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