Hu-ring: A small university satellite for gamma-ray burst

N. Kawai*, H. Okada, N. Miyashita, T. Urabe, M. Kashiwa, T. Tachikawa, N. Yamaguchi, K. Omagari, I. Morita, Y. Yamamoto, Y. Yatsu, T. Ikagawa, J. Kataoka, S. Matunaga

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


We propose a university-class micro-satellite "Hu-ring" to localize and study gamma-ray bursts. The primary mission of Hu-ring is to localize gamma-ray bursts with an 10́ accuracy in real time, and transmit promptly the coordinates to the ground. Although many of its mission concepts are modeled after HETE-2, use of avalanche photodiodes (APDs), innovative photon detector device, make it possible to further reduce the size and the mass of the satellite. We designed Hu-ring within a size of 50 cm cube and a weight limit of 50 kg, so that it can be launched as a piggy-back payload of the Japanese H-IIA Launch Vehicle. The satellite is spin-stabilized, and has a half-sky field of view centered on the anti-sun direction. A set of scintillation counters equipped with rotation modulation collimators are employed for localization of GRBs. We also measure the soft/medium X-ray spectra of GRBs using APDs as a direct X-ray photon detectors. These two kinds of instruments cover the 0.5-200 keV energy range. The satellite bus is designed mostly with commercially available components in order to reduce the cost and the lead time. Following the HETE-2 model, in order to receive the prompt burst alerts it is designed to rely on a global network of receive-only low-cost ground stations, which may be hosted at research instutions with a small footprint. We performed analyses in many aspects: mechanical and thermal design of the satellite bus, attitude control simulations, power budget, ground contact schedule and downlink capacity, etc. We verified that the mission goal can be achieved with this proposed design philosophy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)967-976
Number of pages10
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Issue numberPART 2
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes
EventUV and Gamma-Ray Space Telescope Systems - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 2004 Jun 212004 Jun 24


  • Gamma-ray astronomy
  • Gamma-ray burst
  • Microsatellite
  • Nanosatellite
  • X-ray astronomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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