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The Indian Hand in a French Satellite

Vincent Lapeyrere’s day at work starts with a 200 m walk from his office to the ground station at the Meudon Observatory outside Paris. He has a 10-minute window to issue commands to the PicSat satellite as it flies over Paris, which it does four times a day. Mr. Lapeyrere and his team are trying to reduce PicSat’s spin by providing torque through on-board magnetorquers. Picsat is expected to become stable in two weeks, after which it will commence its mission of studying the star Beta Pictoris and try to detect the transit of its exoplanet Beta Pictoris b.

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