This subject is optional and although it is part of the Senior/Staff Cadet exam system, it is NOT currently taught at the Squadron so it it would have to be learnt as a distance learning unit. Help with this subject is available from the staff and any Cadets who have already passed this module.
Although this module is entitled Satellite Communications, it is more an introduction to space and the history of space travel. Launch vehicles are discussed from the multi-stage rockets like those used during the Apollo program to the more modern reusable vehicles such as NASA’s Space Shuttle and a mention of the Soviet Shuttle Buran. The associated rocket motors, multi-stage rockets and solid rocket boosters are introduced along with the different types of fuels that have been used in the past.
Satellites are eventually brought in, starting with a brief history of satellites and their different uses before the subject of the types of orbit is discussed. Spy satellites, observatories, weather and communication satellites are all briefly mentioned before discussing GPS technology and its uses. Finally, space communications and space travel is discussed, looking at the problems involved in space travel, the Suns satellites, i.e. the planets in our solar system, and the spacecraft that have been launched from the Earth to the planets and beyond; Voyager being the most famous of these craft followed by the Mars projects.
A 25 question multiple-choice exam has to be taken at the end of this module in order to pass.