The GRIFEX team full assembled the flight unit for the first time yesterday. See the pictures below. Integration has been flawless so far and we are on schedule for a delivery of the flight unit in August to Cal Poly for launch integration. This week will be performing a vibration test of GRIFEX and a shock test will be performed in a few weeks. Launch is still holding for October.
GRIFEX flight unit with a solar panel removed.
GRIFEX flight unit.
MCubed-2 and its sister satellite, IPEX which was developed at Cal Poly, both appeared in the NASA 2014 Science Plan. See page 98 of the full science plan. CubeSats are mentioned throughout the plan as a tool for education, technology development, and potentially science. The Heliophysics Research Program describes the Diversify, Real- ize, Integrate, Venture, Educate (DRIVE) initiative, which includes CubeSat flight opportunities.
Many thanks to the IARU team helping to coordinate global satellite frequencies. GRIFEX was recently coordinated by them, and we will be operating at our typical MXL CubeSat frequency of 437.485. GRIFEX launch is scheduled for the fall of 2014. Follow this link to the IARU list of coordinated satellites.
MXL is at the spring CubeSat workshop at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo. Kathryn Luczek is presenting a poster on QB50. We are also part of several presentations, see below:
- The Successful Operation of MCubed/COVE-2 – Paula Pingree @ JPL
- Shields-1, A CubeSat With a Radiation Shielding Research Payload — Dr. Larry Thomsen @ NASA Langley
- INSPIRE: Interplanetary NanoSpacecraft Pathfinder in Relevant Environment — Dr. Andrew Klesh @ JPL
If you’re at the workshop, stop by and say hello!
MC2 continues to be successfully tasked to operate COVE and perform experiments. We recently ran our 25th successful COVE run on pic6, a picture taken by MC2 on 09 February 2014 over northern Michigan. A succesful run means that the COVE payload processed the image, and that the data produced by the algorithm matched the data produced during the first COVE run on pic6, which was verified by the ground test unit at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
On April 04, 2014, we took three new pictures on MC2 over southern California. We downloaded thumbnails of all three pictures and decided to download higher resolution jpg images of two of the better pictures shown below. We will be downloading the jpg’s within the next couple of days.
Also, the online Live Telemetry site’s “Cove Num Failures” data point was renamed to “Cove Halted Runs.” The names “COVE Num Success” and “COVE Num Failures” were misleading, as these numbers don’t necessarily tell us if the image processing actually failed or was successful. In order to know if the process was actually successful or unsuccessful, further processes are required.