CubeSat Personal Satellite Kit
Explore Low Earth Orbit
The IOS CubeSat has the standard CubeSat dimensions, but is custom-designed for the IOS deployment unit, not the standard P-Pod. As with the TubeSat, the CubeSat price includes a launch into a polar, circular, Low Earth Orbit on an IOS modular launch vehicle. The kit can be ordered with the standard 1.33-kg mass or the now non-standard 1-kg mass. The price will vary accordingly. Since the CubeSats are placed into self-decaying orbits 310 kilometers (192 miles) above the Earth's surface, they do not contribute to the long-term build-up of orbital debris. After operating for a several weeks or months (the exact length of time on-orbit is dependent on solar activity), they will safely re-enter the atmosphere and burn-up. CubeSats are designed to be orbit-friendly.
-- Earth-from-space video imaging
-- Earth magnetic field measurement
-- Satellite orientation detection (horizon sensor, gyros, accelerometers, etc.)
-- Orbital environment measurements (temperature, pressure, radiation, etc.)
-- On-orbit hardware and software component testing (microprocessors, etc.)
-- Tracking migratory animals from orbit
-- Testing satellite stabilization methods
-- Biological experiments
-- On-orbit advertising
-- Space art
-- Space burials
The CubeSat is assembled from a stacked set of printed circuit boards (PCBs) installed in an aluminum chassis. Internal PCBs include a Power Management PCB, an Antenna PCB, a Microcontroller PCB, and a Transceiver PCB. Four Solar Cell PCBs are attached to the outside of the chassis; these boards accommodate a total of 60 high-efficiency solar cells. External Guide Bearings facilitate the satellite's deployment from a tubular ejection unit on orbit. A fully assembled Arduino Microcontroller PCB board is shown at the right. An enormous quantity of open source software is available for programming the Arduino, making it an ideal satellite microcontroller for the experimenter. A sizable area is reserved for the builder's experiment or application. As long as the experiment or application satisfies the volume and mass restrictions, it can be integrated into the CubeSat. These restrictions provide a unique intellectual challenge for the experiment or application designer.
The CubeSat Transceiver PC board is disigned for the Radiometrix TR2M transceiver with a Radiometrix AFS2 amplifier. CubeSat builders have the option of using the included PCB Gerber files for the Radiometrix or selecting a transceiver of their choice and building a custom transceiver PC board. The owner of a CubeSat operating in the amateur radio band will require an amateur radio license, a license to use an allocated frequency, and any applicable experimental permits from the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) or non-US equivalent. For information about commercial operations from space, contact the FCC or equivalent (requires an Experimental Radio Service license in the US).
CubeSats are also available as Double (2U) CubeSats, or Triple (3U) CubeSats. The length, volume, and mass of these expanded CubeSats are based on the multiplying factor, as are costs.
You can can download the latest CubeSat brochure by clicking the tab on your right. For more detailed information, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 661.965.0771, and request a Specifications and Pricing document.
CubeSats are designed to function as a Basic Satellite Bus or as a simple stand-alone satellite. Each CubeSat kit includes an aluminum chassis, printed circuit board (PCB) Gerber Files, electronic components, solar cells, batteries, transceiver (requires an authorized frequency allocation from the FCC or equivalent non-US entity), antennas, and an Arduino microcontroller. With these components, the builder can construct a satellite that can send a signal from space. This signal can be picked up on the Earth's surface with a hand-held amateur radio receiver. Simple applications include broadcasting a repeating message from orbit or programming the satellite to function as an orbital amateur radio relay station. These are just two examples. The CubeSat also allows the builder to add his or her own experiment or function to the basic CubeSat Kit. Examples of independently developed add-on experiments or applications include the following: