CubeSat Research and Development

 

I first became aware of CubeSats after reading this DesignSpark article. This was the spark that ignited my latest obsession. I started researching CubeSats on the internet and found may articles about them but very little information on their design and components used. If you look on “Gunter’s Space Page” you will see that there have been many CubeSats launched, many of them from Universities, but it seems that everyone is designing their own from scratch with little collaboration with others that have already designed and perhaps launched one. I think this is such a waste. So many people have spent countless hours designing and testing and at the end of their project the information is just “shelved”.

There also seems to be very little information about how the missions went and lessons learned. For example I was very interested in the ArduSat. They had plans on launching 30 ArduSat per year over a five year period. Sadly this doesn’t seem to have happened, and I can’t really find out anything about what happened with the first one. The website is now a shop selling Arduino kits. The open source components that were designed seem to be still available from Freetronics which is great. Even just having the prototyping board in the right form factor is handy.

Having gotten quite excited about the CubeSat concept and then quite disappointed about the availability of designs I have decided to use my website as a knowledge repository for all the information I can find out about CubeSats and also to document my progress on my own ‘proof of concept’ design and maybe one day even get my own CubeSat launched. I have hopes that this project could even turn into a community created open source CubeSat design providing a complete, functional CubeSat so that all you need to do is add a payload and you are away.

 

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