Event Title

MightySat I: In Space

Session

Technical Session I: New Hardware In Space

Abstract

MightySat is a United States Air Force (USAF) Research Laboratory multi-mission, small satellite program dedicated to providing frequent, inexpensive, on-orbit demonstrations of high-payoff space system technologies. MightySat I, the 140lb pathfmder satellite of the MightySat series, was ejected from the Space Shuttle Endeavor on the 15th of December, 1998. Contact with the satellite was established one hour after ejection, and MightySat I has been performing robustly on-orbit ever since. This paper provides an overview of the MightySat I satellite and its experiments: a lightweight composite structure, high-efficiency solar panels, low-power microelectronics, low-shock release devices, and micro-particle impact detectors. The design, integration, and test process is described, as is the process of Space Shuttle integration and [mal testing. The paper then discusses the onorbit operations, coordinated from the Space and Missile Systems Center's Test and Evaluation directorate (SMCfTE) at Kirtland AFB, NM, and conducted using two UHF ground stations in Virginia and New Mexico. The launch, initial contact, and early-orbit checkout sequence of events is described. The paper describes payload initialization and on-orbit data collection, and highlights some of the payload data currently being collected. A brief discussion of the upcoming MightySat II satellites and missions is also included.

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Aug 23rd, 1:30 PM

MightySat I: In Space

MightySat is a United States Air Force (USAF) Research Laboratory multi-mission, small satellite program dedicated to providing frequent, inexpensive, on-orbit demonstrations of high-payoff space system technologies. MightySat I, the 140lb pathfmder satellite of the MightySat series, was ejected from the Space Shuttle Endeavor on the 15th of December, 1998. Contact with the satellite was established one hour after ejection, and MightySat I has been performing robustly on-orbit ever since. This paper provides an overview of the MightySat I satellite and its experiments: a lightweight composite structure, high-efficiency solar panels, low-power microelectronics, low-shock release devices, and micro-particle impact detectors. The design, integration, and test process is described, as is the process of Space Shuttle integration and [mal testing. The paper then discusses the onorbit operations, coordinated from the Space and Missile Systems Center's Test and Evaluation directorate (SMCfTE) at Kirtland AFB, NM, and conducted using two UHF ground stations in Virginia and New Mexico. The launch, initial contact, and early-orbit checkout sequence of events is described. The paper describes payload initialization and on-orbit data collection, and highlights some of the payload data currently being collected. A brief discussion of the upcoming MightySat II satellites and missions is also included.