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Center Innovation Fund: JPL CIF

Inflatable Antennas for CubeSats Communication and Science in Deep Space

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

Inflatable Antennas for CubeSats Communication and Science in Deep Space
The work will be organized as a collaboration between JPL and two external partners: Arizona State University and Meteorological Product Inc. (Mylar manufacturer). Objectives: EM Analysis and feed antenna re-design (JPL): Design of an array feed to compensate for surface curvature, fabrication and test together with the inflatable membrane in the anechoic chamber. Pressure control for the MESA test (JPL): Use of a pressure control system to ensure correct inflation and maintenance of the desired shape during the MESA test. Mechanical Analysis (JPL): Development of a canister and of a mechanism for storage and deployment. Inflation system reliability (ASU): Development of a mechanism to control the release of the powder at the beginning of the inflation, and development of a UV curing rigidization system with experimental tests. Antenna prototyping (MPI): Prototype fabrication. Control analysis (JPL): Test at the SSDT for attitude dynamics, including antenna pointing and disturbances’ characterization. More »

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