Sending wireless command to an Arduino on a CubeSat

Hello,
I am currently working on a project involving CubeSats. These are basically small cube satellites. Our CubeSat will need to be controlled remotely and I was hoping to use an Arduino to do this.
So the first thing I need the arduino to do is send a specified current (around 1.5 Amps) through a wire. The second thing I need it to do is control a motor which will operate an extending arm. I want to be able to send a command from my computer to make these things happen.
Any ideas on what I need to make this possible?

I appreciate any input you all have.
Thanks!

There is a lot involved in doing what you ask, more than you can imagine I guess.

Can you provide more details of the project and where and when the launch is due ?

That’s quite certainly possible - as long as you have your satellite in sight (so not at the other side of the earth) and you have some form of communications link between you and your satellite.

But I think an Arduino is the wrong device for this, it’s too bulky, even the Pro Mini. Most likely an ATtiny can do the job. Much smaller. They come in really tiny packages.

danielllarry13:
I want to be able to send a command from my computer to make these things happen.
Any ideas on what I need to make this possible?

You need to start by telling us what sort of wireless system is used for communication with the satellite. I suspect it is a little different from the stuff I use for model train remote control.

…R

Cubesats communicate with the ground using amateur radio, usually in the 432 mHz frequency region.

I guess the OP missed the person coordinating the local communications within the cubesat. That will be the physical communications with the OP's project.

Paul

Sorry I wasn't very clear. So this project just involves creating a prototype. This will actually not launch and be in orbit. I just need to be able to send the signal from across the room, let's say around 25 feet. We are not using actual space-grade equipment and materials due to budget constraints. So we chose an arduino because they are inexpensive and pretty versatile.

Then use a pair of NRL24L01 modules, or Bluetooth if you want to connect to a phone.

Hello all,
I am currently developing a burn-wire release mechanism for a CubeSat. I am using nichrome wire as the heating element which requires about 1.6 amps to get to the temperature we need to cut the vectran cable. Would it be possible to use any kind of Arduino to supply this amount of current to the nichrome wire? We need to be able to send a command wirelessly to start the heating. The range just needs to be about 20 feet.
Or do you all have any other suggestions on a board we could use?

The on-board regulator can only deliver 0.5 amps to the Arduino. You probably need to have an external relay or transistor that the Arduino controls (on/off) to flow that much current

Would it be possible to use any kind of Arduino to supply this amount of current to the nichrome wire

No sort of micro controller of any sort on the planet, or beyond can deliver that much current from a pin. The clue is in the name micro “controller”, you can control an external current source using extra hardware like a FET.

The range just needs to be about 20 feet.

That is a low orbit :o

Well for a simulation its an idea to stick with as close to what can be used as possible, its more realistic that way.

For a short term Cubesat, chucked out of the ISS for instance, there is no compelling need to use space hardened parts and nothing wrong with Arduinos either. Most of the Arduinos will fit inside of a Cubsat also.

Most any wireless coms will work over that range.

Cutting the cord for antenna release can be done with a simple MOSFET, although do check that the battery in use can supply the required current (1-2A) when the battery is cold.

@danielllarry13, do not cross-post. Threads merged.

This Simple nRF24L01+ Tutorial may be of interest.

...R