Understanding the effect of the new deorbiting regulations on CubeSats operations

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Authors
Kreger, Ella
Issue Date
2024-04-12
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en_US
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Abstract

In 2022, the Federal Communications Commission approved the five-year rule aimed at mitigating orbital debris by limiting the amount of time satellites remain in orbit after the end of their operational lifetimes. The rule has the potential to impact small satellites the greatest owing to a lack of an active deorbiting mechanism in most cases. This study investigates the impact of including deorbiting mechanisms on the spacecraft's operating altitude and mass. Numerical simulations were utilized to quantify the effect for 3U, 6U, and 12U CubeSats, considering onboard drag augmentation and propulsion. The new maximum compliant altitudes of the satellites with the addition of the devices wereestablished. The mass penalty for the CubeSats from the deorbit-assisting devices was also determined.

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Presented to the 23rd Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Forum (URCAF) held at the Rhatigan Student Center, Wichita State University, April 12, 2024.
Citation
Kreger, Ella. 2024. Understanding the effect of the new deorbiting regulations on CubeSats operations. -- In Proceedings: 23rd Annual Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Forum. Wichita, KS: Wichita State University, p. 12.
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Wichita State University
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