Details of the three CubeSats flying with Cygnus Spacecraft

Along with the launch of Orbital ATK’s OA-9 Cygnus, three CubeSats were also launched whose primary purpose would visualize Earth from different angles for better studying of the various aspects of the Earth’s atmosphere. The principal investigators of the three CubeSats developed spoke at a “Whats on Board” pre-launch briefing which took place at the NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility Visitor Centre Auditorium held on may 20 2018.

The first one among them is called as the TEMPEST-D. It stands for The Temporal Experiment or Storms and Tropical System-Demonstration. It is a CubeSat which was invented in the Colorado State University which s located in the Fort Collins, Colorado. The primary aim of this CubeSat would be to judge the clouds as well as the precipitation process within them. If the technology receives a green signal, then it would be deployed in a satellite constellation to gauge the source of precipitation and the cycle within them. It would also help to understand the precipitation process on a global scale as well.

V. Chandrasekhar who is the head of this CubeSat said that it is imperative they this discovery becomes a success, and then they can utilize its capacity within a constellation. But they have to ensure the fact that it can work for a continues period of 90 days. The attitude control of this CubeSat is done with the help of reaction wheel and torque rods. Chandrasekhar further said that it is essential to ensure that the attitude control is ultra precise.

The next CubeSat is known as the Raincube. It is designed to find out the eligibility of a radar payload in the CubeSat platform. It is a system through which the measurement of rainfall snowfall can be done quickly. It is a technique which would find out climate as well as weather models in a low cost and efficient manner. One of the latest technologies adapted in this CubeSat is the radar antenna deployment mechanism. 

The third one is called as the Cuberrt. It means for Cubesat Radiometer Radio Frequency Interference Technology. It is a system which is founded to test the new radiometer instruments to put a curb on the ever-increasing amount of radio frequency interference that satellites face while attempting to collect all the information necessary.

All these three CubeSats along with the other Cubesats are packed inside a Nanoracks deployer inside the Cygnus.