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Home | Tag Archives: cubesat

Tag Archives: cubesat

UTEP hosts CubeSat Workshop on Small Satellite Design, Testing and Operation

Faculty and staff from The University of Texas at El Paso’s Department of Mechanical Engineering  and NASA MIRO Center for Space Exploration and Technology Research (cSETR) learned about the intricacies of the CubeSat – miniaturized satellites used in space research – during a workshop presented by members of the California Polytechnic State University’s (Cal Poly) PolySat laboratory in the Undergraduate Learning Center.

Cal Poly, located in San Luis Obispo, California, is recognized as the creator of the CubeSat standard, which facilitates access to space research for university students.

Friday’s workshop introduced UTEP students and faculty to the best practices related to small satellite design, testing and operation. It included lessons learned from a Cal Poly team with more than two decades of experience in CubeSat development.

Workshop attendees left with a greater understanding of small satellite development, which will enable the UTEP small satellite program to continue to grow.

At UTEP, cSETR promotes research and education in aerospace and energy technologies. It also creates opportunities to link and integrate UTEP’s research efforts in energy science and engineering into a broad, interdisciplinary research venture.

Recently, the program celebrated successful communication with its Orbital Factory-2 satellite project, a significant feat that highlights UTEP’s position as a national leader in technological research and its implementation.

“The Cal Poly CubeSat Lab has over 20 years of experience in small satellite development,” said Amelia Greig, Ph.D., assistant professor of mechanical engineering.

“At UTEP we are just starting our small satellite program. Having access to the incredible knowledge of the Cal Poly CubeSat lab at this time will be of immeasurable help to UTEP students wanting to be involved in developing small satellites. This training will no doubt help our future satellite missions run more smoothly and be as successful as possible.”

Gallery+Story: UTEP, High School Students Win United Launch Alliance CubeSat Competition

Students from the NASA MIRO Center for Space Exploration and Technology Research, or cSETR, at The University of Texas at El Paso have been selected as first place winners of the United Launch Alliance (ULA) CubeSat launch competition, known as CubeCorps.

Their project, Orbital Factory II (OF2), will be launched on board the Atlas V rocket and placed into an elliptical orbit approximately 26,000 miles above Earth’s center.

ULA President and CEO Tory Bruno traveled to El Paso and made the announcement Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017 on the UTEP campus.

“I am thrilled to announce The University of Texas El Paso as the first place winner of our CubeCorps competition,” Bruno said. “Congratulations to the team; you are the next generation of rocket scientists and space entrepreneurs, and we are honored to be your ride to space.”

ULA’s CubeCorps was established to encourage hands-on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) experiences and provide universities with the opportunity to launch their CubeSats. This low-cost approach will make space more affordable and accessible.

Students and faculty members from UTEP’s Department of Mechanical Engineering will collaborate with engineers and technologists from Lockheed Martin Space Systems to design and develop the OF2, which will demonstrate on-orbit repair of solar cells using 3-D printing technology. The UTEP student team was led by research assistant professors Angel Flores-Abed, Ph.D., and Arifur Khan, Ph.D., cSETR research engineer Michael Everett, and David Espalin, associate director at the W.M. Keck Center for 3D Innovation.

UTEP’s CubeSat development initiative is a strategic partnership between its Keck Center for 3D Innovation and cSETR.

“Our goal is to quickly position ourselves as a leader of this rapidly emerging area to bring more opportunities for our students,” said Department of Mechanical Engineering Chair and Director of cSETR Ahsan Choudhuri, Ph.D. “Although there are other major university players, our strategic strength in additive manufacturing and in-space propulsion makes us a formidable team.”

ULA is the nation’s most experienced and reliable launch service provider, successfully delivering more than 115 satellites to orbit that provide critical capabilities for troops in the field, aid meteorologists in tracking severe weather, enable personal device-based GPS navigation and unlock the mysteries of the solar system.

UTEP’s second CubeSat project, Orbital Factory I (OF1), is giving students from Bowie and Burges high schools and Hornedo Middle School the opportunity to work alongside University researchers to demonstrate robotic manipulations using a CubeSat platform. OF1 was the second place finisher of the Boston Museum of Science Fiction and New York NASA Space Grant Consortium High School CubeSat Competition.

More K-12 learning opportunities will be included in the development and testing of CubeSats as part of cSETR’s commitment to engineering education at all ages.

Team with UTEP, Bowie Faculty and Students wins International CubeSat Competition

The Museum of Science Fiction, the world’s first comprehensive science fiction museum, in partnership with NASA and Cornell University, named a team of students and faculty from The University of Texas at El Paso and Bowie High School winners of its international CubeSat competition.

The UTEP and Bowie team will be awarded $10,000 toward the completion of a CubeSat – a grapefruit-sized satellite designed to perform a specific task while in orbit around the Earth – and have their device launched into space upon completion.

These satellites usually collect data or take photos while in orbit; however, the UTEP and Bowie team’s CubeSat will send a manufacturing robot into space to perform basic tasks and to send data back to Earth in order to provide insight to other engineers, scientists and future researchers.

“These designs were selected based on a combination of innovation, technical feasibility, and successful articulation of a concept from science fiction” said Mason Peck, member of the museum’s board of advisors and director of Cornell University’s Space Systems Design Studio. “I want to congratulate these young minds who displayed a mature and professional degree of technological acumen with their proposals. I’m eager to see their designs go from the drawing board to reality and up into orbit.”

Winning entries from the global competition came from Ithaca, New York, and Suzhou, China, in addition to El Paso.

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