Why These Ships

1225 ships detected on first 80 minutes of mission

People has asked us why we have not tracked ships in The Atlantic Ocean and other places.

The ships on the map was tracked during the very first 80 minutes of operation of AAUSAT3. As one orbit takes around 100 minutes this is a result of less than one orbit. In one orbit AAUSAT3 only receive AIS messages from ships maybe 500-2000 km out on each side of the track. And as the first orbit did not cover the Atlantic there is not tracked ships in that region.

In addition to that areas with really many ships might be diffult to receive from in space because due to large number of ships many ships far away from a surface point of view, but in same distance from a space point of view, will be sending at same time so the satellite will have a situation where several overlayed AIS signals will be received - which gives problems in extracting the distinct ships.

Our AIS systems did run on a default configuration which was our best guess before launch. There might be (we hope) room for improvement of configuration and algorithms to deal with the interesting problems depicted above in coming experiments.

So to conclude. The first 80 minutes was - in our mind - very impressive and we think we can say our mission already now is a big success.