Project Opportunity : UKSEDS Payload for DARE Stratos II
There is an opportunity to for a UKSEDS wide project involving flying an experiment on a dutch sounding rocket.
UKSEDS may be able to provide a proposal for a scientific payload. A project would need, at a minimum, on the experiment side, very committed team members on science, electronics, and mechanics, and in addition one team member would need to be dedicated to pushing the project forward. If we can get that we think UKSEDS would be able to form a case that Stratos II would be able to use if they wished.
UKSEDS have been corresponding with our international colleagues and have had recent contact with a Dutch group called DARE.
Delft Aerospace Rocket Engineering (DARE) are a student organisation linked to the TU Delft in the Netherlands that has existed for a little over ten years now. They design, develop, build and launch their own rockets with the goal to get students more interested in rocket science. Currently, most of their members are involved in the Stratos II projects, which has the aim to build their own sounding rocket, to launch payloads to an altitude of 50 km.
Here we describe information regarding the payload availability within the Stratos II rocket, the planning for these payloads and more detailed specifications for these payloads DARE require.
Payload availability and planning
Currently the planning for the launch of Stratos II is still in the second half of 2013. The aim is to launch at the end of the summer months. When keeping this in consideration and looking at where DARE are now, they consider the first half year of 2013 to be the best time slot for payload customers to work on the payload. For students this first half year will also roughly correspond with one semester in their academic years, which will hopefully make sure it will fit more easily in their planning.
This means globally that the detailed agreements concerning payloads should be made before the end of February. During this period design can already be done and we assume that the preliminary designs of the payloads can be done near the end of March. At this point they can negotiate the final interfaces between the rocket and the payload: what does the payload need and what can we offer. Depending on how fast a payload is done the intergration and testing can be done from May onwards.
These were their first ideas of the planning. Hopefully you would find this a reasonable option as well. It would be helpful if members can provide us with feedback on this as well. We can negotiate to see what planning would be feasible and what not.
Now DARE have more specifications ready for the payloads onboard the rocket. Included with this article is a document with preliminary electrical specifications. These detail what the rocket electronics can supply to the payload and what requirements the payload should adhere to.
Next to these electrical specifications, a few more details have been set regarding the physical specifications. Concerning the physical dimensions of the payloads, DARE are aiming to make sure that PCB’s that adhere to the CubeSat standard size can be mounted in the payload capsule. As the CubeSat standard is know and recognized the world over we think this is a good base layout for the payloads onboard Stratos II.
Over the next few weeks DARE want to make a number of final decisions regarding our propulsion system. This will then also give more clearity on the accelerations and launch loads the payloads will endure and which flight regimes the rocket will pass through.
Finally, the whole cooperation between payload customers and the Stratos II team will always be open for negotiations. If you find that you want to perform a certain mission with your payload but are hindered by requirements posed by DARE, they can look into these requirements with us and can see if we can negotiate these requirements and come to an agreement.
If you would be interested in joining the UKSEDS team please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will put a list together to be forwarded to UKSEDS for consideration. Ideas for a proposed scientific payload would also be appreciated, however you don’t have to have one to be involved! (Please note this project will run over multiple academic years).
Please include in the email:
- Course subject you are studying
- Year of study
- Preferred position in team (eg electronics team member, Project Manager, PR team member etc)
- Previous experience (don’t worry if you have none)
- Ideas for a scientific payload