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Design and Development of NEA Scout Solar Sail Deployer MechanismThe 6U (approx.10 cm x 20 cm x 30 cm) cubesat Near Earth Asteroid (NEA) Scout1, projected for launch in September 2018 aboard the maiden voyage of the Space Launch System, will utilize a solar sail as its main method of propulsion throughout its approx.3-year mission to a Near Earth Asteroid. Due to the extreme volume constraints levied onto the mission, an acutely compact solar sail deployment mechanism has been designed to meet the volume and mass constraints, as well as provide enough propulsive solar sail area and quality in order to achieve mission success. The design of such a compact system required the development of approximately half a dozen prototypes in order to identify unforeseen problems, advance solutions, and build confidence in the final design product. This paper focuses on the obstacles of developing a solar sail deployment mechanism for such an application and the lessons learned from a thorough development process. The lessons presented will have significant applications beyond the NEA Scout mission, such as the development of other deployable boom mechanisms and uses for gossamer-thin films in space.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Ames Research Center
Document Type
Conference Paper
Sobey, Alexander R.
(NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Lockett, Tiffany Russell
(NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Date Acquired
June 30, 2016
Publication Date
May 4, 2016
Publication Information
Publication: 43rd Aerospace Mechanisms Symposium
Subject Category
Mechanical Engineering
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.
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