This paper investigates the suitability of a nickel chromium wire cutter (NCWC) for use on the GASPACS (Get Away Special Passive Attitude Control Satellite) Mission. It is intended that when activated the NCWC will cut through a restraining wire and thereby release the stored energy of the deployable AeroBoom. Flight worthiness is based on favorable performance during functional testing to address known issues with the NCWC, such as wire burn through and cutting issues. In-depth testing discussed in this paper includes: Manufacturability of the NCWC, including analysis of possible acceptable performance errors induced from inefficiencies in the assembly process, functional testing of a prototype NCWC under flight conditions, and analyzing the safety margin between the flight running conditions and the point of failure (destructive testing). The results from these tests support the conclusion that the current design of the NCWC will successfully support the GASPACS mission in deploying its AeroBoom Experiment.
Gardiner, James, "Suitability of Nickel Chromium Wire Cutters as Deployable Release Mechanisms on CubeSats in Low Earth Orbit" (2015). Physics Capstone Projects. Paper 24.