Design and Testing of a Low-Cost, Open Source, 3-D Printed Air-Bearing-Based Attitude Simulator for CubeSat Satellites

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@article{bbd7c75dcc964f1d8b649e0db0d06e26,
title = "Design and Testing of a Low-Cost, Open Source, 3-D Printed Air-Bearing-Based Attitude Simulator for CubeSat Satellites",
abstract = "With the surge of interest in nano-satellites, there is a concomitant need for high quality, yet affordable simulation and testing environments. It is particularly challenging to experimentally evaluate nano-satellite attitude control systems in a test environment. This article investigates the technical feasibility of fabricating a low-cost air-bearing platform with three degrees of freedom of angular motion using desktop 3-D printing technology with limited printing resolution. An open source air-bearing attitude simulator for complete 1U CubeSat is proposed, manufactured, and characterized. The platform is equipped with directional air nozzles that enable external torque generation in order to cancel out i) parasitic moments of inertia from the satellite’s enclosure and ii) error torque produced by imperfections. It is also capable of simulating disturbances in a space environment. The results show that the torques produced by the nozzles can reach beyond 0.001 Nm and are sufficient to remove error torques and provide torque compensation of the orders of 0.0004 Nm. Removing the effects of gravity torque with the nozzles proved to be unachievable with the current design, requiring precise positioning of the CubeSat within the enclosure. Future work has been identified for a number of improvements to the design and details for the further development of the platform.",
keywords = "open source hardware, open hardware, 3D printing, additive manufacturing, CubeSat, Air bearing, Aerostatic, Attitude simulator, SpaceCraft Simulator",
author = "Nemanja Jovanovic and Joshua Pearce and Jaan Praks",
year = "2019",
month = "9",
language = "English",
volume = "8",
pages = "859--880",
journal = "JOURNAL OF SMALL SATELLITES",
issn = "2327-4123",
number = "2",

}

RIS - Lataa

TY - JOUR

T1 - Design and Testing of a Low-Cost, Open Source, 3-D Printed Air-Bearing-Based Attitude Simulator for CubeSat Satellites

AU - Jovanovic, Nemanja

AU - Pearce, Joshua

AU - Praks, Jaan

PY - 2019/9

Y1 - 2019/9

N2 - With the surge of interest in nano-satellites, there is a concomitant need for high quality, yet affordable simulation and testing environments. It is particularly challenging to experimentally evaluate nano-satellite attitude control systems in a test environment. This article investigates the technical feasibility of fabricating a low-cost air-bearing platform with three degrees of freedom of angular motion using desktop 3-D printing technology with limited printing resolution. An open source air-bearing attitude simulator for complete 1U CubeSat is proposed, manufactured, and characterized. The platform is equipped with directional air nozzles that enable external torque generation in order to cancel out i) parasitic moments of inertia from the satellite’s enclosure and ii) error torque produced by imperfections. It is also capable of simulating disturbances in a space environment. The results show that the torques produced by the nozzles can reach beyond 0.001 Nm and are sufficient to remove error torques and provide torque compensation of the orders of 0.0004 Nm. Removing the effects of gravity torque with the nozzles proved to be unachievable with the current design, requiring precise positioning of the CubeSat within the enclosure. Future work has been identified for a number of improvements to the design and details for the further development of the platform.

AB - With the surge of interest in nano-satellites, there is a concomitant need for high quality, yet affordable simulation and testing environments. It is particularly challenging to experimentally evaluate nano-satellite attitude control systems in a test environment. This article investigates the technical feasibility of fabricating a low-cost air-bearing platform with three degrees of freedom of angular motion using desktop 3-D printing technology with limited printing resolution. An open source air-bearing attitude simulator for complete 1U CubeSat is proposed, manufactured, and characterized. The platform is equipped with directional air nozzles that enable external torque generation in order to cancel out i) parasitic moments of inertia from the satellite’s enclosure and ii) error torque produced by imperfections. It is also capable of simulating disturbances in a space environment. The results show that the torques produced by the nozzles can reach beyond 0.001 Nm and are sufficient to remove error torques and provide torque compensation of the orders of 0.0004 Nm. Removing the effects of gravity torque with the nozzles proved to be unachievable with the current design, requiring precise positioning of the CubeSat within the enclosure. Future work has been identified for a number of improvements to the design and details for the further development of the platform.

KW - open source hardware

KW - open hardware

KW - 3D printing

KW - additive manufacturing

KW - CubeSat

KW - Air bearing

KW - Aerostatic

KW - Attitude simulator

KW - SpaceCraft Simulator

M3 - Article

VL - 8

SP - 859

EP - 880

JO - JOURNAL OF SMALL SATELLITES

JF - JOURNAL OF SMALL SATELLITES

SN - 2327-4123

IS - 2

ER -

ID: 38838668