You woodn’t believe what its made of!

The University of Kyoto in Japan, in collaboration with Sumitomo Forestry Co (SFC), has constructed a wooden satellite. According to the University and SFC, this satellite is the first of its kind and a massive step forward in terms of turning the industry into becoming more eco-friendly. 

The satellite, known as ‘LignoSat’, was officially announced on Tuesday 28th May and signifies a massive breakthrough in the development of satellite technology. Wooden satellites, in comparison to their metal counterparts, upon re-entering Earths atmosphere, would not cause the same effects when burning up. Currently, when a satellite burns up in the Earth’s atmosphere, it leaves metal particles.

Takao Doi, astronaut and aerospace engineer at Kyoto University, says, “Satellites which re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere burn and create tiny alumina particles, which will float in the upper atmosphere for many years. Eventually, it will affect the environment of the Earth.”

Using wood is going to have a massive effect on the industry, an industry in which (currently) nearly 100 spacecraft are launched into space every year and have been since 2010. Plenty of those same spacecraft will be returning to Earth at the end of their lifespan. The re-entry process is the cause of the metallic elements burning up, which can be harmful to our atmosphere. 

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), around 10% of our atmosphere is made up of these metals. Currently it is unknown what the long-term effects of these metals are, though there is some evidence to suggest they can damage the ozone layer. 

The new development by Japan’s University is not just intended for the sake of progress in the scientific field but also to prevent another near-century of damage from re-entry. The LignoSat, carefully developed after four years of research and development, is the culmination of the Kyoto and SFC’s research, something which has proven to be a remarkably durable creation. 

The prototype has been rigorously tested in a simulated space environment and has shown no sign of degradation or damage. Koji Murata, head of the project, has stated the team is “astounded” by “wood’s ability to withstand (space) conditions)”. He attributes this primarily to the environment of space, where there is no oxygen and therefore nothing to inflame the wood or cause it to rot.

While there is currently no set launch date, LignoSat is expected to spend a six-month orbit around the Earth. Though, if potential dates are to be considered for launch, 25th April would be a good one! (please search this date for reference for the awesome joke).

UPDATE ON DIANE ABBOTT: The Diane Abbott saga continues. The Labour Party’s indecision has now moved beyond incompetent to be, frankly, embarrassing. After 3 days of denials that anybody was actually responsible for a decision that was taken months ago. Certainly not Kier Starmer, but now it seems not the NEC either. As Tory Mark Logan is accepted with open arms, Diane Abbott who has fought and won every election for Labour since 1987 has still not been confirmed as the candidate for Hackney and Stoke Newington. Deputy Leader Angela Rayner, who posed as a Corbyn loyalist when that seemed the best career move, confirmed in interviews that “I don’t think there’s any reason” why Diane should not stand. As @FromSteveHowell points out on X: “Diane Abbott was selected by Labour members in Hackney North and Stoke Newington to be their candidate TWO years ago.” In fact, she was reselected with 100% support. The NEC will now report on Tuesday. @SaulStaniforth, also on X, said that the idea that the NEC was somehow impartial in this matter was something of a misrepresentation. “
Starmer didn’t mention several NEC members are carving up safe Labour seats for themselves.” The denial of a purge rings as true as Israel’s denial it is carrying out a genocide. When Tory defectors, whose voting records suggest they are inherently anti-working class find Labour a safe place, but where those on the left are being deselected at an alarming rate, it is clear that what we been saying for a while now is evidently true: Labour is now a conservative party. 

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