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A Long-Wave Infrared Sensor for CubeSats
short description
We propose a long wave infrared camera for Earth observations.
Introduce yourself or your team
Princeton Satellite Systems was founded in 1992. Since then we have developed the ACS for Indostar-1, a commercial communications satellite, the momentum management system for TDRS H, I, J and the safe mode guidance for the Prisma formation flying space experiment. We are currently developing a state of the art ACS for the Army for a 25 kg satellite. We also developed an optical navigation system for NASA. We have extensive flight experience including GPS IIR, Indostar-1, GGS polar and many other missions.
What makes you an ideal candidate for this Challenge?
We have extensive spacecraft experience ranging from the Space Shuttle On-Orbit Digital Autopilot to autonomous control systems for geosynchronous satellites. We build space hardware including star cameras, sun sensors and reaction wheels. We sell satellite design and simulation software worldwide. This software gives us unparalleled resources to solve design problems. Our breadth of experience allows us to meet any challenge. Our depth of experience allows us to find and solve problems from the lowest hardware levels to the CONOPS level.
Describe your solution.
We have a long wave micro infrared camera for thermal imaging from orbit. This delivers images in the 8-14 micron range.
What is the size of your proposed solution?
70 g.

35 x 60 x 25 mm.
Does your solution help Special Operations Forces missions? How?
This sensor images in the far infrared. This expands the spectral band that can be observed. This can make it harder for adversaries to hide. It also makes it useful during passes over terrain that is not illuminated by the sun.
Where known, identify platform accommodation requirements for power.
Less than 1 W.
Where known, identify platform accommodation requirements for thermal control.
-10 to +65 deg-C.
Where known, identify platform accommodation requirements for data transfer rate.
8.6 fps of 80x60 14 bit pixels is the maximum data rate. Typically, only one or two frames would be taken and then sent to the ground. Each image takes 1.2 s.
Where known, identify platform accommodation requirements for data transfer volume (per orbit).
This is up to the user.
Where known, identify platform accommodation requirements for bus stability and attitude control.
The bus should be 3 axis stabilized and capable of pointing at nadir. Low jitter and precision pointing are desired but not required. Our Precision Attitude Control System (PACS) developed for the Army would be ideal but is not required.
Can you identify any additional platform accommodation requirements for your solution?
The sensor should be on the nadir deck with an unobscured FOV.
Can your concept can be implemented with current state-of-the-art flight-qualified components, or will it require additional development? Please describe.
Our current sensor is suitable for short duration CubeSat missions. We have a vendor who can build versions suitable for multi-year missions where high reliability is required.
Intellectual Property: Do you acknowledge that this is only the Concept Phase of the competition, and all ideas are to remain the property and ownership of USSOCOM for future discretionary use, licensing, or inclusion in future challenges?
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