Update: The TuPOD will be released in January 2017 (exact date yet to be set).
The first launch into Space ever of the TuPOD took place today December 9, 2016, at 13:26:47GMT, from the Yoshinobu Launch Complex, Tanegashima Space Center, in Japan.
The TuPOD is a 3U CubeSat satellite that works at the same time as a deployer of TubeSat (a category of small satellites), designed by the Company G.A.U.S.S. Srl and built with the cooperation of the Company Tetonsys.
The TuPOD has been launched onboard the H-II Transfer Vehicle “KOUNOTORI6” (HTV6), using the H-IIB rocket. The HTV6 is a spacecraft having the mission of delivering supplies to the astronauts of the ISS. This is the sixth consecutive successful launch of the HTV to the ISS.
It will take 4 days for the HTV to reach the ISS, where it will be captured by the astronauts using the ISS robotic arm. Some hours later the astronauts will open the hatch and will start unloading the cargo. The TuPOD will be manually released using the J-SSOD deployer
between the 19th and the 26th December 2016 then navigating on an orbit of its own.
3.5 days after its release from the ISS, the TuPOD will switch on and release its hosted tiny satellites, TANCREDO I and OSNSAT, that will transmit telemetry and data to radio amateurs from all over the world.
This innovative space mission represents a new threshold in the field of small satellites’ launch services.
Video of the liftoff