Early this morning, NanoRacks successfully completed the Company’s 13th CubeSat deployment mission from the International Space Station. As these five CubeSats enter low-Earth orbit, this brings NanoRacks to 176 total CubeSats deployed into space via the NanoRacks CubeSat Deployer (NRCSD). In total, the Company has deployed 193 satellites into space.
Additionally, NanoRacks is pleased to share that this mission marks the first deployment of the industry standard 6U CubeSats in the 2U x 3U form factor from the NanoRacks ‘Doublewide’ Deployers. The 6U satellites deployed were EcAMSat, Dellingr, and ASTERIA.
“It’s critical for us at NanoRacks to grow our CubeSat services with the changing small satellite landscape,” says NanoRacks External Payloads Manager Conor Brown. “CubeSats are following a similar path as cellphones – first they were as small as possible, and now they are starting to grow in both size and capability. Now, beyond just accommodating the industry standard 6U form factors, we can deploy CubeSats up to 12U in size from the Space Station, providing opportunities for more advanced payload concepts.”
The NRCSD-13 Mission included satellites launched on the most recent SpaceX and Orbital ATK commercial resupply services missions to station for NASA, which launched Aug. 14 and Nov. 12, 2017, respectively.
“To speak specifically, the timeline for the EcAMSat biological satellite is unprecedented. From contract signing to in-space deployment, the entire launch campaign took less than seven months, with deployment occurring within one week of arriving to Station,” continues Conor Brown.
Thank you to NASA for their continued support of NanoRacks satellite deployment program.
Read below to learn about the CubeSats deployed in this mission:
The Arcsecond Space Telescope Engabling Research in Astrophysics (ASTERIA), is a 6U cubesat from MIT and JPL. Asteria is a technology demonstration mission to enable high-precision photometry through radiometer instruments. The mission goal is to test new technologies for astronomical observation, such as the detection of planets outside of our solar system using the measurement of stellar brightness over time. Asteria uses advance pointing control technology and new thermal stabilization features to perform these complex measurements.
ECAMsat is a 6U CubeSat developed by the NASA’s Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, in partnership with Stanford University School of Medicine. It is the first NASA biology mission in the 6U configuration. EcAMSat will investigate the space microgravity effect on the antibiotic resistance of E. Coli, a bacterial pathogen responsible for urinary tract infections in humans and animals.
Radiation Belt Loss Experiment, also known as Dellingr, is a 6U CubeSat developed by NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and the agency’s Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Virginia. Dellingr is equipped with an Ion-Neutral Mass Spectrometer and Science Magnetometers intended to increase our understanding of solar wind energy disposition on composition changes in Earth’s upper atmosphere. This understanding of space weather can help protect communication resources and reduce risks associated with electromagnetic exposure. This project also demonstrates CubeSat performance capability for large-scale remote sensing tasks.
Technology Educational Satellite 6, also known as TechEdSat-6 is a 4U CubeSat developed by San Jose State University and the University of Idaho as a collaborative engineering project with oversight from NASA Ames. This satellite will be demonstrating an Exo-Brake system to provide a targeted nanosatellite de-orbit using a fully propellant-less technique. Future spacecraft that may utilize this Exo-Brake system include small payloads returning to Earth or landing on Mars. This satellite is part of the TechEdSat family, of which NanoRacks has deployed several from the ISS!
Orbital Satellite for Investigating the Response of the Ionosphere to Stimulated Space Weather (OSIRIS-3U) is a 3U CubeSat developed by Pennsylvania State University. It will conduct atmospheric research on the effects of solar flare activity on the Ionosphere. Ground based heaters will stimulate Ionosphere to create artificial space weather events and science instruments on OSIRIS-3U will measure the electron content, density and temperature.
All five of these satellites were selected for flight by NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative (CSLI) as a part of the Educational Launch of Nanosatellites (ELaNa) missions, sponsored by the NASA Launch Services Program (LSP).
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NanoRacks is enabling space research and in-space services to customers world-wide from multiple platforms and launch vehicles. The company offers low-cost, high-quality solutions to the most pressing needs for satellite deployment, basic and educational research and both at home and in 30 nations world-wide for those new to the industry and aerospace veterans. Since 2009, Texas-based NanoRacks has truly created new markets, and ushered in a new era of in space-services.
In July 2015, NanoRacks signed a teaming agreement with Blue Origin to offer integration services on their New Shepard space vehicle. NanoRacks, along with partners at ULA and Space Systems Loral was also selected by NASA to participate in the NextSTEPs Phase II program to develop commercial habitation systems in low-Earth orbit and beyond.
As of November 2017, over 600 payloads have been launched to the International Space Station via NanoRacks services, and our customer base includes the European Space Agency (ESA) the German Space Agency (DLR,) the American space agency (NASA,) US Government Agencies, Planet Labs, Millennium Space Systems, Space Florida, NCESSE, Virgin Galactic, pharmaceutical drug companies, and organizations in Vietnam, UK, Romania and Israel.