P18101: CubeSat Solar Sail

Gate Reviews

Table of Contents

Your team will hold a gate review with your guide at the end of each semester. This page should document any information needed for the review, as well as outcomes.

MSD I: Readiness to move to Build & Test

Status Review

As of the end of MSD I, the team has met all performance criteria, aside from a few exceptions. In terms of customer needs, all requirements were satisfied (these are highlighted in green), or are on track to be satisfied during MSD II (these are highlighted in yellow). In terms of Engineering Requirements, some changes had to be made throughout the semester, however these were all discussed with and approved by the customer. Some engineering requirements, such as remote deployment of the sail, were even dropped, as the customer decided this functionality would be integrated into a central control unit in the future, which is why it is grayed out.

Progress on Meeting Customer Requirements

Progress on Meeting Customer Requirements

The team's planned schedule has not changed significantly following the completion of the first gate review. In general, the team managed to stay on top of all scheduled tasks throughout the semester, with no major hiccups that prevented tasks from being completed on time.

Overall, the team's performance was satisfactory to all members of the team. The main, but all minor issues that came up were the members' varying working hours, engineering calculations, scheduling expectations, and participation. The first issue is regarding the team's tendency to work on tasks and communicate at sporadic hours of the day. Some members stay up later than others, so the team's night owls will make sure to hold communications off until times when the entire team will be awake and active, so that no messages are missed by anyone. As for engineering calculations, computations regarding sail volume were performed inaccurately due to unanticipated factors. This was largely due to inexperience with the material, so the team will be more cautious of situations like these in the future and make strides to anticipate problems. As for scheduling expectations, there were times when the group was struggling to meet scheduled targets on time, although tasks were being scheduled to be completed before they were necessarily required by the MSD standards, so these schedules will be more closely aligned in the future. Finally, while there were not issues with team members not pulling their weight, there were times when one team member would take on the brunt of a daunting task by themselves, so work will be more evenly distributed among members next semester. A link to the live document can be found here.

At this point, finding a space to test the assembled deployment mechanism in is still a major concern. Although we have reduced the targeted sail area by 50% (down to sixteen square meters), the team is confident that this new sail volume can be contained within the CubeSat frame. In the future, we will aim to anticipate problems similar to those we encountered in the first phase as a means to tackle them before they significantly affect the project.

Since the team has completed final drawings for the deployment mechanism, manufacturing of the parts will be able to begin as soon as MSD II commences. The frame's drawings have been handed off to RIT SPEX, who will handle fabrication of these components. As stated above, the new manufacturing, assembly, testing, and troubleshooting goals will line up a bit more in line with the expectations outlined by the suggested MSD II schedule. As of now, the team hopes to hang the design from the central atrium in the Gosnell building during Imagine RIT, however these plans may change in the future if the setup is deemed to be too difficult to maintain or unsafe in any manner.

MSD II: Project close-out


Status Review

Current state of the project

Deliverables Checklist and Website Status

Lessons learned, etc.

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