6S CubeSat Project

Spinning
Sun-Synchronous
Satellite for
Station-keeping
Structural battery and
Solar cell testing

6S CubeSat

6S is a 1U CubeSat that will be the first satellite entirely designed and built by students of Politecnico di Milano.

Our goal is to provide an opportunity to get hands-on experience and apply knowledge about mission and subsystems design in practice. We are also creating network with external parties, as the team meets with interested companies, securing not only components or sponsorships, but also future jobs.

If you are interested in the project, please consider making a donation by clicking the button below… help us reach space!

Mission

The 6S mission aims at testing a set of two innovative payloads mounted on a 1U CubeSat: a set of Perovskite solar cells and a structural battery. The classic LEOP phase is followed by the Nominal Testing Phase in which basic payloads functioning is assessed and performance data downlinked. The Off-nominal Testing Phase follows, in which all the payloads and the overall platform are stressed even more. Lastly, the satellite is passivated, and natural decay is exploited.

The primary objective is to conclude the Nominal Testing Phase tests successfully: monitoring the structural battery employing thermocouples, pressure sensors and strain gauges and measuring solar cell power produced and correlating it with attitude measurements.

Partners

Operating at Politecnico di Milano, the most valuable partner of 6S CubeSat is the University itself. PoliMi provides the team with needed expertise, facilities and resources and the team members are in constant contact with PoliMi professors who advising thanks to their knowledge and experience.
Moreover, taking into account company-like structure of Polispace, partnerships and sponsorships for 6S CubeSat are established via Business&Finance department. It is responsible for research, contact and maintaining relationships with various companies and institutions.
The current partners of 6S CubeSat, among others, are: Politecnico di Milano, Payload providers (Cambridge University&Potsdam Research Group, Volta Structural Energy), Software companies (Altair, Esatan, Ansys), D-orbit, Leafspace, Sidereus.

6S Payloads

Pesca

PESCA

Perovskites have emerged as a promising candidate for improving the efficiency of solar cells while being relatively inexpensive to produce and very lightweight.

These properties make them attractive for space applications. Eight cells samples of different Perovskites will be supplied by the University of Cambridge and Potsdam research group and will be flown for the first time in space, on a long therm mission.

PESCA (PErovskite Solar Cells Analyzer), is an in-house testing circuit for the solar cells that was designed and created by the team with the advice of some PoliMi’s professor. The main goal is to measure degradation over time and to characterize the cells in space, by measuring the open circuit voltage (Voc), short circuit current (Isc) and taking some hundreds of points of the IV curve, while aquiring temperature and sunlight inclination.

Volta

Volta Structural

Structural batteries represent a novel approach for integrating the energy storage within structural parts of a manufact.

This leads to volume reduction, which is at a premium in space applications. As they are just emerging from the prototype phase, many variables require testing to ensure the readiness of this technology for space missions. The battery id provided by Volta Structural Energy, an Innovative Start-Up created by former PoliMi students, and will be analyzed in its thermal and structural behaviour in space.


All test data will be centrally collected on a daughterboard attached to the on-board computer. These PCBs were designed to fit the needs of the mission, saving space compared to out of the box solutions and optimises the utilisation of all available inputs and outputs of the OBC.

Timeline

December 2020 - March 2021
Leadership Team Recruitment
Gathering Mission Proposals from companies and Polimi professors
March 2021 - July 2021
Phase 0

Team Membrs Recruitment (33 people in total)

Phase 0

Basic Definition Review:

  • Selection and deep investigation of 5 proposals
  • Meetings and revisions with Polimi professors
Phase 0

Mission Design Review, preliminary:

  • Mission Environment Analysis
  • State of the Art analysis
  • Preliminary Mission Objetives
  • Mission Phases and Modes
  • Launchers Analysis
  • Payload Analysis
  • Risk Analysis
  • Basic Cost Estimation
July 2021 - November 2021
Phase A

Preliminary Requirements Review:

  • High-level mission objectives
  • Mission Environment
  • State of the Art
  • Payloads review and selection, mission objectives
  • Preliminary analysis: Phases & ConOps & -Modes
  • Launchers
  • Mission Analysis
  • Preliminary sizings: AOCS, TMTC, OBDH, EPS, TCS, Structures
  • Configurations
  • Risk Analysis"
Phase A

Submission of two abstracts for 4th Symposium on Space Educational Activities

November 2021 - June 2022
Phase B

System Requriements Review

Phase B

Preliminary Design Review

June 2022 - December 2022
Phase C

Critical Design Review

December 2022 - October 2023
Phase D
End October 2023
Launch

6S CubeSat Project Donation

Donation via PayPal by clicking the button below:

Donation via Bank Account with the following details:

  • Accountholder: PoliSpace
  • IBAN: IT44E0623009512000063721094
  • F.Code: 0000097909080158
  • Address: Via Orboni 11, 20161 Milano