Solution1: Hermes

Published by admin on Sat, 11/19/2011 - 22:47

The Hermes satellite is the result of a semester long space craft design course at Princeton University. Students taking the class applied the material taught in the course and material from various outside sources to come up with a Phase A satellite design to address the challenge of tracking small bird migration from space.


Based on discussions with migration experts, the following set of requirements was derived:

Tracking Accuracy
As precise as possible, 10-50km minimum
Tracking Intervals
Every Day
10+ years
1000+ transmitters, many species
Multiple types of low-power transmitters/ID codes


The following design teams were formed:

Management - To overview all teams and ensure that deadlines and objectives were being met
Payload - Focusing on the interface between the transmitter and satellite
Mission Analysis and Launch - Determining ideal orbit and choosing a launch vehicle
Propulsion - Choosing and designing propulsion systems for course and attitude correction
Power - Designing a power system (including solar panel arrangement) to supply necessary power
Attitude Determination & Control - Choosing systems to maintain high pointing accuracy
Software & Computing - Designing a computer system to make all necessary calculations
Communications - Responsible for maintaining contact between satellite and ground stations
Structure - Responsible for integrating all system elements into satellite configuration
Thermal - Responsible for ensuring that all equipment remains within operating temperatures