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NASA Announces Next Opportunity For Cubesat Space Missions

August 9, 2010

NASA has announced a second opportunity for small satellite payloads to fly on rockets planned to launch in 2011 and 2012. These CubeSats could be auxiliary cargo on previously planned missions.

CubeSats are a class of research spacecraft called nanosatellites. The cube-shaped satellites are approximately four inches long, have a volume of about one quart and weigh less than 2.2 pounds.

CubeSat investigations should be consistent with NASA’s Strategic Plan or the Education Strategic Coordination Framework. The research should address aspects of science, exploration, technology development, education or operations.

Applicants must submit proposals electronically by 4:30 p.m. EST, Nov. 15. NASA will select the payloads by Jan. 31, 2011, but selection does not guarantee a launch opportunity. Collaborators may be required to provide partial reimbursement of approximately $30,000 per CubeSat. NASA will not provide funding for the development of the small satellites.

NASA recently announced the results from the first round of the CubeSat Launch Initiative. Twelve payloads have made the short-list for launch opportunities in 2011 and 2012. They are eligible for launch pending an appropriate opportunity and final negotiations. The satellites come from 10 states: Alabama, Alaska, California, Colorado, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, Utah and Vermont.

For additional information on NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative program, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/directorates/somd/home/CubeSats_initiative.html

For more information on NASA’s Strategic Plan, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/budget

For more information on NASA’s Education Strategic Coordination Framework, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/offices/education/performance/strategic_framework.html




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