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SkyCube [Southern Stars Group ]

SkyCube is a crowdfunded 1U CubeSat, bult by Southern Stars Group LLC, whose mission is to tweet messages submitted by its investors and to take pictures of places they have requested. And in the final weeks of its life, it will inflate a silver balloon so they can see it as it sails overhead.

SkyCube features four cameras, deployable solar arrays and an inflatable 3 m reflective balloon, making it very visible and increasing atmospheric drag to de-orbit it in a few weeks.

It was launched on board of Cygnus CRS-1 to the International Space Station, from where it was deployed on 28 February 2014 from the Kibo airlock by Nanoracks deployers.

After deployment in orbit, signals were received twice: on deployment day, then again on 27 March 2014. The telemetry received, allowed to deduce that the cause of failure was a solar panel non-deployment. Everything else (batteries, radio, flight computer, power system, etc.) appeared to work fine. The mission was declared a loss on 28 July 2014 and the satellite finally reentered on 8 November 2014.

Nation: USA
Type / Application: Technology, education
Operator: Southern Stars Group LLC
Contractors: Southern Stars Group LLC
Equipment: Deployable solar arrays, batteries
Configuration: CubeSat (1U)
Propulsion: None
Power: Solar cells, batteries
Lifetime: 3 months
Mass: 2 kg
Orbit: 406 km × 416 km, 51.65
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
SkyCube 1998-067EL 09.01.2014 WI LC-0A Antares-120 with Cygnus CRS-1, Flock-1 1, ..., 28, ArduSat 2, LituanicaSAT 1, LitSat 1, UAPSat 1


Further SkyCube missions:

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