AuroraSat: Now Orbiting the Earth to Share Northern Culture, Thanks to ISS and a NanoRacks Deployment

May, 3 2023

After five years of unwavering dedication, the Aurora Research Institute (ARI) successfully launched its AuroraSat nanosatellite into space on April 24, 2023, at 6:15 AM MT. The satellite was deployed using the NanoRacks CubeSat Deployer aboard the International Space Station (ISS), joining NEODOSE (McMaster University) and YukonSat (Yukon University) in the cosmic arena. Over the next 12 to 18 months, it will journey through low Earth orbit, sharing artwork and stories from the Northwest Territories (NWT) with the world.

AuroraSat's primary objectives revolve around three outreach missions: Northern Images, Northern Voices, and Northern Games. The Northern Images Mission is already live, featuring artwork from NWT youth, captured with Earth's horizon as a stunning backdrop. In the coming months, the Northern Voices Mission will share captivating northern stories about space and the sky in various languages, broadcasting them to amateur radio enthusiasts across the country. Lastly, the Northern Games Mission encourages participants to design an interactive game centered around northern Indigenous histories and languages for amateur radio operators worldwide, with plans to launch soon.

Launched last month on March 14, 2023, aboard a SpaceX-27 Falcon 9 rocket and Cargo Dragon spacecraft, AuroraSat made its way to the International Space Station (ISS). As a part of the Canadian CubeSat Project (CCP) and the Northern SPIRIT (Space Program with Interesting Research and Integrated Training) initiative, AuroraSat aims to offer STEM outreach opportunities to elementary and high school students in the NWT, as well as other interested participants.

To learn more about AuroraSat and the Northern Images Mission, or to submit your digital artwork to be photographed in space and sent back to you on Earth, please visit Stay tuned for updates on the Northern Voices and Northern Games Missions.

If you are a media member seeking access to the original news release regarding the AuroraSat launch, we invite you to visit the following link:

Aurora Research Institute (ARI) is the research division of Aurora College. The mandate of ARI is to improve the quality of life for residents of the Northwest Territories by applying scientific, technological and Indigenous knowledge to solve northern problems and advance social and economic goals. To achieve this mandate ARI conducts and supports research throughout the NWT.  ARI is headquartered in Inuvik, and has regional research centres in Inuvik, Yellowknife and Fort Smith. Website:

For more information, please contact:

Jayne Murray                                                                          
Manager, Communications & College Relations
Aurora College                                                            
Phone: 867-872-7021