Florida Tech CubeSat Experiment Feasibility StudyCubeSats are a relatively new type of satellite. Smaller than long-term (5+ year life expectancy) satellites, these pico-satellites are comparatively cheap, small (10x10x10 cm), and are very versatile. Universities world-wide are using CubeSats to conduct a variety of experiments in space without the need for a large experimental platform. Today CubeSats are considered to be one of the most effective ways to send a small payload into space and has attracted the attention of many educational and non-profit organizations. As this pico-satellite model continues to gain penetration into the satellite build and launch industry, it is expected that more governmental, educational, and commercial interests will emerge. As an example, more of the space-related items of high interest to the National Science Foundation may be tackled with a CubeSat platform resulting in lower life cycle costs than traditional satellite options. NASA LSP, in cooperation with the Florida Institute of Technology, has initiated a feasibility study to investigate the technical aspects of measuring and transferring vibration, acceleration, temperature, and video data from a CubeSat to NASA Hanger AE on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) a.k.a. Kennedy Space Center (KSC). This report provides a technical feasibility analysis to determine whether-or-not a specific set of NASA/LSP requirements can be accomplished. Our approach has been to provide a "notional" component layout to determine the feasibility of the NASA/LSP stakeholder requirements. The notional layout is used to consider component level technical issues such as size, weight, & power (SWaP), bandwidth, and other critical technical parameters. Even though the notional components may satisfy the stated requirements and thereby demonstrate feasibility, the notional layout is NOT considered a design since no component optimization and design trade-off analysis has taken place. This activity should be accomplished in an appropriate design phase that is outside of the scope of this effort.
Arrasmith, William W. (Florida Inst. of Tech. Melbourne, FL, United States)
Platt, Don (NetLander, Inc. Titusville, FL, United States)