NanoRacks-LitSat-1 (NanoRacks-LitSat-1) - 11.22.16

Overview | Description | Applications | Operations | Results | Publications | Imagery

ISS Science for Everyone

Science Objectives for Everyone
NanoRacks-LitSat-1 is a technology demonstration representing one of two Lithuanian CubeSats, together Lithuania’s first satellites in space. NanoRacks-LitSat-1 is deployed from the International Space Station and uses internal gyroscopes, accelerometers, magnetometers, solar sensors and a global positioning receiver to determine the satellite’s orientation. Results from NanoRacks-LitSat-1 pave the way for a new type of satellite attitude control that replaces typical reaction-wheel gyroscopes.
Science Results for Everyone
Information Pending

The following content was provided by Vidmantas Tomkus, and is maintained in a database by the ISS Program Science Office.
Experiment Details

OpNom: NanoRacks CubeSat Deployer

Principal Investigator(s)
Domantas Brucas, Ph.D, Space Science and Technology Institute, Vilnius, Lithuania
Andrius Vilkauskas, Ph.D, Kaunas University of Technology, Kaunas, Lithuania

Information Pending

NanoRacks LLC, Webster, TX, United States

Sponsoring Space Agency
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Sponsoring Organization
National Laboratory (NL)

Research Benefits
Information Pending

ISS Expedition Duration
September 2013 - March 2014

Expeditions Assigned

Previous Missions
Information Pending

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Experiment Description

Research Overview

  • NanoRacks-LitSat-1 determines the satellite attitude by measuring the data from Gyro, Magnetic, and sun sensors as well as a GPS receiver.
  • NanoRacks-LitSat-1 is being launched in preparation for the technology demonstration mission of satellite attitude control by means of Piezoelectric reaction sphere.
  • NanoRacks-LitSat-1 also tests the radio amateur linear transponder.

The NanoRacks-LitSat-1 satellite, under contract with NanoRacks LLC.,  is brought to the ISS by the Orbital Cygnus resupply mission one. After releasing to space by the robotic arm from the Kibo module the power supply and the antennas of the satellite are deployed with the delay of 40 min. The collection of the data for the determination of satellite attitude based on measurements of gyro, magnetic, and sun sensors is performed for one week.  These data are used for preparation of the next technology demonstration mission of satellite attitude control by means of Piezoelectric reaction sphere. In a week after the deployment the testing of the radio amateur linear transponder in different modes (continuous wave (CW), single sideband (SSB), frequency modulation (FM) Voice) is planned.  The next experiment tests the space qualified GPS receiver and collects processed and raw data.  In the remaining period of flight the continuation of collection of satellite attitude data and operation of the linear amateur transponder is planned.

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Space Applications
As the first space mission from Lithuania, NanoRacks-LitSat-1 paves the way for future space exploration from the northern European nation. Technology demonstrations testing satellite positioning systems also benefit the international small-satellite community. The investigation enables development of a piezoelectric reaction sphere and piezoelectric suspension damper, a different type of satellite-controlling system that is lighter and cheaper than the typical control system using three reaction wheels.

Earth Applications
Satellites provide telecommunications, entertainment, global positioning data, and many other services for the benefit of people on Earth. Improving satellite orientation and control technology lowers costs and risks for future satellites.

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Operational Requirements and Protocols


NanoRacks CubeSats are delivered to the ISS already integrated within a NanoRacks CubeSat Deployer (NRCSD). A crewmember transfers each NRCSD from the launch vehicle to the JEM.  Visual inspection for damage to each NRCSD is performed.  When CubeSat deployment operations begin, the NRCSDs are unpacked, mounted on the JAXA Multi-Purpose Experiment Platform (MPEP) and placed on the JEM airlock slide table for transfer outside the ISS. A crewmember operates the JEM Remote Manipulating System (JRMS) – to grapple and position for deployment. CubeSats are deployed when JAXA ground controllers command a specific NRCSD.

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Decadal Survey Recommendations

Information Pending

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Results/More Information

Information Pending

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Related Websites

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NanoRacks-LitSat-1 is a technology demonstration mission to determine the attitude of the satellite by measuring data from multiple sensors and a GPS receiver.  Image courtesy of Vidmantas Tomkus.

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NanoRacks-LitSat-1 in pre-deployed configuration. Image courtesy of Vidmantas Tomkus.

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