Defence in the field of Space Science and Technology, M.Sc. (Tech.) Hannu Leppinen
Small satellites weighing perhaps only a few kilograms have become popular in recent years, and during the next decade thousands of small satellites will be sent to orbit. Advances in electronics have allowed fitting sophisticated instruments into smaller spaces, allowing small satellites to partially replace larger satellites and to provide new services. However, the new generation of small satellites will need new software solutions, faster development methods, and cheaper ways of reaching correct orbits.
In this dissertation, technologies and practices that will in the future enable development of low-cost nanosatellites have been studied. A method for deploying nanosatellites to several orbital planes using atmospheric drag is proposed in this work. The method allows deploying a satellite constellation with a single rocket, reducing launch costs. Electronic component selection for nanosatellites, accuracy of low-cost GPS receivers, and benefits and drawbacks of using the Linux operating system in spacecraft are also considered in this work. The research is mainly based on the development and flight results of the Aalto-1 mission. Ways of combining project management and education in a student satellite project have also been studied.
Opponent: Professor Mathieu Barthélémy, University of Grenoble, France
Supervisor: Professor Jaan Praks, Aalto University School of Electrical Engineering, Department of Electronics and Nanoengineering.