A CubeSat is a miniaturised satellite (10x10x10 cm, weighing 1 kg) which offers all the standard functions of a normal satellite (attitude determination and control, uplink and downlink telecommunications, power subsystem including a battery and body-mounted solar panels, on-board data handling and storage by a CPU, plus either a technology package or a small sensor or camera).

They can even have deployable solar panels, antennas or booms. Limited orbit control using micropropulsion, S-band instead of VHF/UHF and wireless data transfer inside the CubeSat are now beginning to be used. It takes about two years to develop a CubeSat from the provision of funding until launch. The hardware cost of a CubeSat is normally in the range 50-100 k€ but can go up to 500 k€ for more sophisticated payloads. Up to now, about 50 CubeSats have been successfully launched, worldwide an estimated 100-150 CubeSats are being readied for launch in the next few years.

type width length height weight start end days
Micro Satellite 0.1 0.1 0.1 1.0 April 15, 2015 January 31, 2016 665