What is a CubeSat?

A CubeSat is a 10x10x10 cm cube shaped satellite with a mass of up to 1 kg.

This platform was developed by Stanford University and California polytechnic University San Luis Obispo and has become the de-facto standard in Picosatellites (satellites under 1Kg).

The main goal of the CubeSat Program is to provide a fast and affordable access to space for small payloads.

General features of all CubeSats are:

  • Each single CubeSat may not exceed 1 kg mass.
  • LEO (Low Earth Orbits).
  • Less qualification requirements (use of COTS parts)
  • Double and triple configurations are possible: 2 kg (20x10x10 cm3) or 3 kg (30x10x10 cm3)
  • Thanks to CubeSat, scientific and technical research teams from a variety of disciplines can access to a space flight mission at low cost and in a short term.

What applications has a CubeSat?

  • Life Sciences.
  • Physics (Nuclear, Optics & Photonics, Atmospheric,…).
  • New concepts in Communications.
  • Qualification flight for technology test-beds.
  • Advanced propulsion concepts.
  • Research projects at low cost.
  • Solar cells.