Hands-on education is recognized as an invaluable tool to improve students’ skills, to stimulate their enthusiasm and to educate them to teamwork. University class satellite programs should be developed keeping in mind that education is the main goal and that university satellites are a unique opportunity to make involved students familiar with all the phases of space missions. Moreover university budgets for education programs are much lower than for industrial satellites programs. Therefore two main constraints must be respected: a time schedule fitting with the student course duration and a low economic budget. These have an impact on the standard which can be followed in university class satellite programs. In this paper university-class satellite standardization is discussed on the basis of UNISAT program experience, reporting successful project achievements and lessons learned through unsuccessful experiences. The UNISAT program was established at the Scuola di Ingegneria Aerospaziale by the Group of Astrodynamics of the University of Rome “La Sapienza” (GAUSS) as a research and education program in which Ph.D. and graduate students have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience on small space missions. Four university satellites (UNISAT, UNISAT-2, UNISAT-3, UNISAT-4), weighing about 10 kg, have been designed, manufactured, tested and launched every two years since 2000 in the framework of this program In the paper, after a brief overview of new GAUSS programs, an analysis of the UNISAT satellites ground test campaign is carried out, identifying the most critical procedures and requirements to be fulfilled. Moreover a device for low earth orbit low-cost satellite end-of-life disposal is presented; this system (SIRDARIA) complies with the international guidelines on space debris.

A space standards application to university-class microsatellites: The UNISAT experience

PIERGENTILI, FABRIZIO;
2010

Abstract

Hands-on education is recognized as an invaluable tool to improve students’ skills, to stimulate their enthusiasm and to educate them to teamwork. University class satellite programs should be developed keeping in mind that education is the main goal and that university satellites are a unique opportunity to make involved students familiar with all the phases of space missions. Moreover university budgets for education programs are much lower than for industrial satellites programs. Therefore two main constraints must be respected: a time schedule fitting with the student course duration and a low economic budget. These have an impact on the standard which can be followed in university class satellite programs. In this paper university-class satellite standardization is discussed on the basis of UNISAT program experience, reporting successful project achievements and lessons learned through unsuccessful experiences. The UNISAT program was established at the Scuola di Ingegneria Aerospaziale by the Group of Astrodynamics of the University of Rome “La Sapienza” (GAUSS) as a research and education program in which Ph.D. and graduate students have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience on small space missions. Four university satellites (UNISAT, UNISAT-2, UNISAT-3, UNISAT-4), weighing about 10 kg, have been designed, manufactured, tested and launched every two years since 2000 in the framework of this program In the paper, after a brief overview of new GAUSS programs, an analysis of the UNISAT satellites ground test campaign is carried out, identifying the most critical procedures and requirements to be fulfilled. Moreover a device for low earth orbit low-cost satellite end-of-life disposal is presented; this system (SIRDARIA) complies with the international guidelines on space debris.
F. Graziani; F. Piergentili; F. Santoni
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/92991
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