F-1 and other CubeSats at TKSC.jpg
FITSAT-1 (middle)
Mission typeTechnology
OperatorFukuoka Institute of Technology
SATCAT no.38853
Mission duration21 months
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft type1U CubeSat
Launch mass1.33 kilograms (2.9 lb)
Start of mission
Launch date21 July 2012, 02:06:18 UTC
Launch siteTanegashima Yoshinobu 2
Deployed fromISS Kibo
Delivered by Kounotori 3
Deployment date4 October 2012 (2012-10-04)
End of mission
Decay date4 July 2013 (2013-07-05)
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric
RegimeLow Earth
Eccentricity0[citation needed]
Perigee altitude413 kilometres (257 mi)
Apogee altitude418 kilometres (260 mi)
Inclination51.65 degrees
Period93 minutes

Niwaka or FITSAT-1 is a 1U CubeSat satellite deployed from the International Space Station on October 4, 2012.

The Niwaka satellite includes high power LEDs which are driven by 200W pulses, allowing Morse code style communication from the sky to the ground.[1] FITSAT-1 (Niwaka) communicates with ground by means of 5.8 GHz high-speed (115200bit/s) transmitter. It also has a 437 MHz (amateur band) beacon and transmitter with data rate 1200bit/s for telemetry downlink. The name Niwaka derives from "Hakata Niwaka", which is traditional impromptu comical talking with masks. It is also the old name of the city Fukuoka, site of the Fukuoka Institute of Technology in Japan which created the satellite.[2] We-Wish, Raiko, FITSat 1, F 1, and TechEdSat travelled to orbit aboard HTV-3.[3]

It reentered the atmosphere on July 4, 2013.[4]


CubeSats deployed to orbit from the International Space Station on 4 October 2012 (from left: TechEdSat, F-1 and FITSAT-1).

See also


  1. ^ FITSAT-1 satellite scheduled to write Morse code in the sky
  2. ^ FITSAT
  3. ^ We-Wish
  4. ^ FITSAT-1 (NIWAKA)

External links

  • FITSAT-1 (Niwaka) log