Lessons learned developing a 3U communication CubeSat

Alim Rustem Aslan, Bulent Yagci, Ertan Umit, Mustafa Erdem Bas, Mehmet Şevket Uludaǧ, Okan Emre Özen, Murat Süer, Ahmet Sofyali

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


A 3-Unit CubeSat, called "3USAT", is developed for voice communication in Low Earth Orbit (LEO). The spacecraft was launched on 26 th of April 2013 from China Jiaquan Satellite Launch centre with a LM2D launch vehicle. The main payload of the 3USAT is a linear transponder operating in VHF/UHF. The 3USAT includes many sensors and a camera for taking pictures, as well. Most subsystems of the CubeSat have redundancy which is provided by COTS equipment and/or in-house developed systems. The two transponders are developed genuinely by the project team. The project team have gained valuable experience from developing subsystems, integrating COTS equipment's, and carrying out space simulation testing. The payload power requirements resulted in temperatures exceeding 100°C. A remedy was developed to remove heat resulting from high power amplifier. Other problems encountered and resolved include grounding issues of electronic and RF systems, the transfer of data and power using PC104 form factor between 1U sections of for 3U COTS structures, thermal vacuum testing of payloads with supporting equipment outside of the chamber, cabling and "cold solder joint" among others.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication64th International Astronautical Congress 2013, IAC 2013
PublisherInternational Astronautical Federation, IAF
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)9781629939094
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Event64th International Astronautical Congress 2013, IAC 2013 - Beijing, China
Duration: 23 Sept 201327 Sept 2013

Publication series

NameProceedings of the International Astronautical Congress, IAC
ISSN (Print)0074-1795


Conference64th International Astronautical Congress 2013, IAC 2013


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