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Topic: NRL Satellite (ARDUINO IN SAPCE!) (Read 27398 times) previous topic - next topic


Cool   :D I bet you're wishing that you'd put more stuff on it now...  ;)



Well done this is a super cool project.

The only thing I am wondering though is if the Atmega is robust enough for space, and what about EM radiation etc in space isn't that worse in space.

I ask because I was reading about an open CPU called the LEON which was specially designed for space.


Jul 16, 2009, 05:46 pm Last Edit: Jul 16, 2009, 05:50 pm by Shutter Reason: 1
Well, a chip with the boot loader and Library on it, Yes
I think the satellite is going to be deployed from the cargo bay in a week or two.
The Satellite does not turn on until it deploys.

Ah, about radiation. The shell of the satellite is a half inch thick.
It provides a fair amount of protection.

The shell is also the antenna to the radio


What frequency does it transmit on ? or is it a secret  ;)

Dave - G6ZKC


It is not a secret :3

My mentor still has yet to write up the info for the public.
I am not even sure what frequency it is at.  :-/

I will see if we can get some of that done today


hi there,
i just found this thread.
So good to hear this.
Actually i also use arduino for OBC of satellite.

Project is called OSSI (open source satellite initiative) and this project is about privatizing space program.
and it's cubesat based system.

I was satellite engineer once before i began my career as artist.

i will post my design soon too

Please visit site -> opensat.cc


You saying we are not the first to do this :<

Thanks to Jim From stensat for sending us more info.

"In addition to the primary ISS construction mission, STS-127 is carrying two 19-inch spherical satellites scheduled for deployment on Mission Day 16. The two spheres, Castor and Pollux http://eludium.stensat.org.nyud.net/ANDE/Main.html, are part of the Atmospheric Neutral Density Experiment (ANDE) that studies atmospheric perturbations in the LEO environment. Castor http://eludium.stensat.org.nyud.net/ANDE/Castor.html contains an ARM processor, while Pollux is running an Atmel ATMega CPU. Pollux http://eludium.stensat.org.nyud.net/ANDE/Pollux.html also contains student payloads developed with Arduino on Atmel AVRs. Both satellites transmit telemetry using the FX.25 FEC format http://www.stensat.org.nyud.net/Docs/Docs.htm developed by the Stensat guys http://www.stensat.org.nyud.net/satellites.htm. Many components are commercial-grade, purchased from Digikey. This is the second ANDE mission, following the successful deployment of MAA and FCal http://www.usna.edu.nyud.net/Users/aero/bruninga/fcal.html on STS-116 (both also flying commercial components.)"

I will post the code for my payload when I can, I will, really
And then I might post the Goldberg-1000 code as well.

Also, Many peoples questions are answered in these links now! Hurra!
Including the radio downlink protocol and frequency!


no i just feel relieved to see other people using arduino in space program.
Just wanted to say hello to you guys!

I also had a chance to talk to some NRL people at the conference in April but they didn't mention arduino and actually didn't know about it.
Maybe they are not the same groups you're working with.

just good to know someone like you is out there.


ei shutter, i have a radio and the proper antenna to listen to your bird, im in switzerland and found this thread while searching for tracking systems based on the arduino..

i have 2 questions, do you have a link to the TLE for your sat? did you publish already the code for the tracking interface?

best regards,


The sats are still in the Shuttle, so there is no TLE data yet, I assume...
How do they update TLE anyways?

As for the code on the tracker, I am still not satisfied with it. Still a bit buggy, I think.

I can post it and update it if you would like.
I will post the code on my site then...

Thanks for your interest!  :)


opps, i thought they had released them already, might happen then during the next hours :)

about the TLE, there has to be a way to get them so to be able to know when is passing.. i will digg that and post it here when they begin orbiting

and yes, might be your code is only for driving the yaesu (or compatible) rotors that are still to expensive, ideally it should be an arduino based step motor satellite tracking system.

i found some code in the forums that heads on such direction but seems the thread is a bit dead right now:


is there anyone here away of such DIY "open hardware" design?



I checked out opensat.cc but it just appears to be a large image with lots of links. Any more detailed information available? Is it an international project?


same impression here, sounds like a big blubble in the style of the Creative Commons hype.. i hope is not just a pose.

i susbcribed to the list, but there are only 2 posts.

is a big label the one of the Open Source Satellite Initiative so lets hope is there for a good use and purpose.



You can retrieve the TLEs for Castor & Pollux, or any other orbiting satellite (including STS-127) from http://www.space-track.org  -- you will probably need to create an account (it's free).   I don't know if it is available to non-US residents or not.  Try it out.


it is available, i have an account there.
tx anyway,

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