Robert explores the use of solid rocket motors to put a CubeSat into orbit. Leveraging of current amateur and student projects which have been developing large and successful motors, an orbital launcher may be in the realms capable by such a team.
Congratulations to Portland State Aerospace Society and their OreSat project, recently selected for the NASA CubeSat Launch Initiative. OreSat, amongst 34 other selected projects will fly as an auxiliary payload on launches conducted by NASA and its partners over the course of 2018, 2019 and 2020.
OreSat has been selected for the 2017 CubeSat Launch Initiative! We're going to space!
The OreSat Team (Oregon Small Satellite Project), recently performed a tower drop test of their 3D printed CubeSat prototype to test the systems reaction wheels. The drop test enabled the satellite to experience approx 2sec of microgravity, enabling the reaction wheels to spin up and then alter the position of the satellite as can be seen in the video.
Ever wanted to design your own CubeSat? Been wanting to know what the thermal requirements will be and where to start?
You now have a place!
Lars Osborne, a mechanical engineer for Spaceflight Industries has posted a beginners guide to Cubesat thermal design on STEMN.
STEMN, as quoted from their website is all about,
connecting the international space community through projects. It’s a place for space-loving scientists, engineers and explorers to share and geek out about the latest out-of-this-world projects. Literally.
As taken from the introduction for a guide for novice spacecraft thermal engineeers,
This is intended to be a guide for an engineering student to create a basic thermal model of their spacecraft in the initial design stages and determine appropriate coatings for passive thermal control. The user should understand what thermal radiation is and how it works. We will estimate the environment, then create a simple thermal model, discuss passive thermal coatings, and end with an example. This guide makes generous assumptions about the spacecraft and environment and is intended to be used in the preliminary design stages. It does not apply to balloon hoisted payloads. If there are components that are temperature sensitive or if internal heat pathways are complex, detailed analysis should be performed. Disclaimer: I am just some random dude on the internet, mission success is your responsibility.
The guide is very well written, identifying all the key drivers with explanations and then follows with example calculations to help the designer step through the process.
Even if you are not looking to build a Cubesat, the guide is still a very good read to broaden your horizon.