R15301: RIT-SPEX Roadmap


Roadmap Summary Project Information

Currently, the Rochester Institute of Technology is doing cutting edge research in a variety of different fields ranging from sustainability to biomedical sciences and everything in between. Since the launch of the first satellites, space has become an ever growing field of interest for research and experimentation. However, RIT currently does not have a presence in space. The goal of the RIT Space Exploration (or SPEX) team is to create an organization that supports students and their research of space systems engineering such that RIT can have a presence in space in the future.

Put photo of project here

Currently the most common and inexpensive way to test different space system technology is through the use of CubeSats. CubeSats are a class of miniaturized research satellites called nanosatellites which are usually no larger than a loaf of bread. While they are not inexpensive to develop and launch, they are significantly cheaper than their full sized counterparts which have the potential to be the size of a school bus. This makes CubeSats a great tool for research. Currently, CubeSats have attracted interest for both universities and industry. For example, a few of the many organizations invested in CubeSats include NASA, Planet Labs, and Los Alamos Laboratories.

For their first CubeSat the SPEX team hopes to develop and test a LASER Uplink Experiment (LUX). Communication is an area of concern with CubeSats and LASER communication is growing area of research in satellites due to low power requirements and minimal addition of interference]. While the SPEX team has formulated a great idea for their first CubeSat launch, they currently do not have significant plans beyond that. With the PRP’s listed below, SPEX will benefit vastly from MSD contributions in their efforts of launching a CubeSat.

Project Name
RIT-SPEX Roadmap
Start Term
End Term
Faculty Guide
Dr. Agamemnon Crassidis
Primary Customer
Anthony Hennig (SPEX President)
Sponsor (financial support)
DPL Roadmap Guide
Mike Walker

DPL Team Members

Member Role Contact
Matt Mares Vibrations email
Charles Krouse Communication email
Charlie Friedman Attitude Control email
Eric Reese Avionics email
Brendan Parke Thermal and Radiation Barrier email
Anna Jensen Power Acquisition - Solar Arrays email
Ben Grotton Structure email
Benchmarking and Background Voice of the Customer Voice of the Engineer Project Readiness Packages