We just launched the largest private satellite constellation in history. 88 Doves (known at Planet as Flock 3p) launched on a PSLV rocket, and as with each new batch of satellites, provided a unique blank canvas for Planet employees, local school children, and some of the world’s most promising aerospace engineers to display artwork and messages for our Earth.
In 2015, Planet partnered with the Global Space Balloon Challenge—an annual STEM education competition—to feature the work of prize-winning teams on the side panels of our very own Dove satellites. Challenge participants ranged from elementary school classes to graduate students, each designing their own mission concepts, creating their own payloads, and launching them to the edge of space on a high altitude balloon. Two of the prize-winning teams were Random Aerospace from the UK who achieved the highest altitude of 42.9km, and RandomRace from Russia who achieved the longest ground track of 250km.
Our Artist in Residence, Forest, etched the participants names and team logos onto the side of two Flock 3p Doves.
Left: RandomRace; Right: Random Aerospace
Right now, those two satellites are in Low Earth Orbit, racing around the Earth at 7 kilometers per second, all while zipping their way through its automated commissioning process. When fully commissioned this Dove will collect millions of square kilometers of imagery a day.
Join us in celebrating the achievements of these winning Balloon Challenge teams!