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Join the DIT Orbital Observatory program and print your own microsatellites

On January 1, 2016, the Southern Fried Science central server began uploading blog posts apparently circa 2041. Due to a related corruption of the contemporary database, we are, at this time, unable to remove these Field Notes from the Future or prevent the uploading of additional posts. Please enjoy this glimpse into the ocean future while we attempt to rectify the situation.


Are you ready for the next evolution of the do-it-together global monitoring movement? For the last few years we’ve been training students, citizen scientists, and legacy academics to build small, low-cost, open-source satellites. These satellites, outfitted with an array of sensors, have, after decades of development, finally reached the point where they can fulfill the gaps left by the Great Deorbiting, when most government research satellites fell–either literally, or simply into disrepair.

Multi-material 3D printing helped lead the charge, allowing users to fabricate parts, even complete micro-circuits, for nickels, using a desktop set up. These parts could be standardized and printed as a single contiguous piece, adding durability and reliability to the project. Thanks to these tools, fabricating your own personal observation satellite is now easier than ever.

Now DIT satellite builders can go one step further. User CrankySky65 has uploaded a complete, single-print microsatellite that’s ready to fly fresh off the print bed. Standard contacts allow for the addition of a solar array, batteries, and whatever camera set-up works best for your purposes. This comprehensive foundation means that anyone can fabricate a plug-and-play microsatellite that’s ready for launch in less than a day.

Last year, we committed to putting 500 citizen-built microsatellites in orbit. This year, we have enough payload for an additional 1200 microsatellites dedicated to ocean monitoring. So get printing and we’ll see you in space!


On January 1, 2016, the Southern Fried Science central server began uploading blog posts apparently circa 2041. Due to a related corruption of the contemporary database, we are, at this time, unable to remove these Field Notes from the Future or prevent the uploading of additional posts. Please enjoy this glimpse into the ocean future while we attempt to rectify the situation.


Deep-sea biologist, population/conservation geneticist, backyard farm advocate. The deep sea is Earth's last great wilderness.


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