Questions tagged [smallsat]

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Is New Shepard an orbit-capable first stage? Could an (albeit small) 2nd stage with propulsion be put on top that could put a smallsat into orbit?

This answer to How is New Shepard the first suborbital booster to successfully perform a powered vertical soft landing? discusses a potential differentiation between Falcon 9's first successful ...
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1answer
224 views

What was the first satellite with mostly COTS electronics?

Computers and memory, radios, cameras, light sensors, temperature sensors, accelerometers & gyros1, power supplies, power conditioners and converters and battery interfaces can all be put together ...
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3answers
119 views

Closest distance at which cubesat (or comparable smallsat) has communicated with the Deep Space Network or any large 10+ meter dish? Cis-lunar ever?

Discussion below Will future deep space optical communications "ground stations" actually be in space, or on the ground? has got me wondering about the improbable situation where a giant ...
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60 views

Do deployments of multiple cubesats obey proposed guidelines such as 20 seconds or more between deployments at 5 m/s or faster?

This answer to What can be done in future mass-cubesat deploys to make them “less irksome” to orbital space debris experts? links to Space Traffic Safety: A New Self-Governance Approach for the ...
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1answer
99 views

Have magnetotorquers ever been used to spin-up a satellite?

Magnetotorquers are often used for momentum dumping of reaction wheels in smallsats, and they can use them as well for attitude control directly, per answers to Are there any modern cubesats or ...
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2answers
104 views

Are there any modern cubesats or smallsats that have relied only on magnetotorquers for attitude control?

This comment got me thinking... Question: Are there any modern cubesats or smallsats that have relied only on magnetotorquers for attitude control, sans reaction wheels or thrusters? Ideally an ...
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1answer
88 views

Is the prompt relay of landing telemetry by the MarCo cubesats to Earth really a “first”?

The MarCo cubesats travelled from Earth to Mars alongside InSight and relayed signals from InSight (UHF) to Earth (X-band) during it's descent and landing on the surface of Mars. The NPR podcast and ...
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1answer
109 views

News of eXCITe with QIKcom-2 and SeeMe, have they been launched, or is there currently one scheduled?

Comments under the question What ever happened to SHERPA? about NovaWurks, Inc. led me to search for the DARPA eXCITe microsatellite. Spaceflight 101's page includes: Th(e) objectives of the ...
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1answer
281 views

What is this “space ring”? Is it SHERPA or something new, or just “art”?

In the orbitalreflector.com website there is a picture of a ring that looks like it can deploy smallsats as part of a more complex launch. Reverse image search turns up another view, both shown below. ...
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5answers
820 views

How can the CYGNSS spacecrafts (actually) measure ocean roughness?

The Cyclone Global Navigation Satellite System is a group of 8 smallsats which will orbit near the equator (inc=30°) and work as a constellation to take data on typhoons and hurricanes. While they are ...