The ASE Department has created a new facility for designing, building, and testing satellites at the University of Texas. The finishing touches are being put on a facelift of room WRW 407 this fall. Formerly a student office area, the room will now be used to design and fabricate satellites that may actually be launched into space and operated by students. The suite contains two large slate tables upon which small satellites (< 30 pounds) can be integrated and functionally tested. The room will also house computers and electrical test equipment, such as oscilloscopes and signal generators, when completed.

The lab will be pressed into service as soon as this fall, with the planned design of small sounding rocket and satellite payloads that may be launched as early as next year. These small payloads will give both graduate and undergraduate students hands-on experience with building and operating satellites with a total project time span of a few years. Although the satellites are small, the projects being planned are expected to have a big impact on the orbital mechanics curriculum. Two projects that are currently being planned are a cluster of satellites to perform atmospheric research and a lunar flyby mission.

Explore Our History

1920s  •  1930s   •  1940s   •  1950s   •  1960s   •  1970s   •  1980s   •  1990s    2000s  •  2010s