I have spent the past 6 years working with teams of high school students to design, build and fly what will be historys first high school satellite, TJ^3Sat. What started out as the dream of a former student, has turned into the hardest project I have ever had the opportunity to work on and the most educationally meaningful experience for my students.
The projects primary mission is to give any educational institution, K-12 and beyond, the opportunity to communicate and manipulate an actual satellite from within the classroom. The satellite contains a voice synthesizer, which when paired with our web interface, will allow for multi-lingual transmission of user submitted voice messages from low earth orbit.
Currently we are preparing to go into our testing phase, which will verify the satellite is fit for flight and we are manifested for launch on NASAs CRS-2 mission in 2012. In addition, we are in the process of making all of our materials available to the public; including PCB designs, code, presentations, and documentation. So that hopefully, this project wont be the last.
Check out the links and I hope you see just how important this community is to inspiring students and teachers alike. And please feel free to ask questions!
So keep those soldering irons warm and Happy New Year!
P.S. We will be flying Arduino