Nexus S PhoneSat v2 Plans Summer 2013 Launch

PhoneSat v2 is a technology demonstration mission intended to increase the functional capabilities of PhoneSat v1 and demonstrate complete satellite functionally in a low cost package.

The satellite is built around the Nexus S smartphone which will be running the Android operating system and will be enclosed in a standard 1U CubeSat structure.

The main function of the phone is to act as the Onboard Computer, but the mission will also utilize the phone’s SD card for data storage, 5 MP camera for Earth Observation, 3-axis gyroscope and 3-axis magnetometer for Attitude Determination, and 3-axis reaction wheel control system and 3-axis magnetorquer control system for Attitude Control.

The main mission objective is to demonstrate each of the core subsystems: Attitude Determination, Attitude Control, Two-way communications and solar cell power generation.

The two-way communication is done by a Microhard MHX2420 operating in S-Band. The beacon downlink is acheived by a Stensat operating in the UHF band. The UHF beacon will be the primary means of transmitting heath data for each subsystem.

The Microhard transceiver will be the primary means of uplinking TLEs, shut-off safety signal and downlinking large mission files. The satellite will periodically downlink health data packets every 30 seconds that contain basic telemetry info from the UHF beacon. The UHF beacon is planned to operate using the AFSK AX.25 packet radio protocol in the 435-438 MHz band.

Total hardware cost was kept below $10k and the satellite design was kept as simple as possible.

One 1U PhoneSat v2 satellite will be launched from a 3U P-POD alongside other nanosats in the ElaNa V mission. Planned for launch in Summer 2013 from Kennedy Space Centre aboard SpaceX CRS3 into a 325 km circular orbit 51.6 degree inclination.

IARU Amateur Satellite Frequency Coordination Panel status page