JoSS Bulletin - December 2018

We, the staff of the Journal of Small Satellites (JoSS), 
wish you and yours all the best in 2019!

Peer Reviewed Articles
Trade-Offs and Optimization of Air-Assisted Launch Vehicles for Small Satellites

Vaios Lappas, Ph.D. - University of Patras, GR
JoSS, Vol. 07, No. 03 (Dec. 2018), pp. 753-772
A Scalable Drag Sail for the Deorbit of Small Satellites

Alexandra C. Long - Georgia Institute of Technology, GA US
David A. Spencer - Purdue University, IN US
JoSS, Vol. 07, No. 03 (Dec. 2018), pp. 773-788
NASA Operational Simulator for Small Satellites (NOS3): The STF-1 CubeSat Case Study

Dustin M. Geletko, Matthew D. Grubb, John P. Lucas, Justin R. Morris, Max Spolaor, Mark D. Suder, Steven C. Yokum, and Scott A. Zemerick - NASA Independent Verification and Validation (IV&V), Independent Test Capability (ITC), Jon McBride Software Testing and Research (JSTAR) Laboratory, WV US
JoSS, Vol. 07, No. 03 (Dec. 2018), pp. 789-800


CT for Clouds: SmallSat Mission to Answer Climate Questions Wins European Research Council Award
(L-R) Prof. Ilan Koren, Prof. Yoav Schechner and Prof. Klaus Schilling in front of the precision turntables of ZfT to test satellite formation characteristics.
An Israeli-German mission to 
launch a formation of ten tiny
satellites that use medically-inspired CT (computed tomography) algorithms to answer climate questions has been awarded €14 million by the European Research Council (ERC) Synergy Program.  The smallsat mission is slated to enter orbit in a few years and begin filling in some gaping holes in our under-standing of clouds and their role in climate. 

The multi-disciplinary project was inspired by medical CT (computed tomography), which observes and maps the interior of a patient, the designers are creating a system that will reveal detailed images of clouds' external and internal 3D structures and properties. By probing small cloud fields that are generally missed by today's remote sensing technologies, the mission may resolve some major uncertainties that limit current atmospheric modelling and climate prediction. 

CloudCT, as the mission is known, is led by Prof. Yoav Schechner (the Viterbi Faculty of Electrical Engineering at the Technion, Haifa), an expert in computer vision and computed tomography; Prof. Ilan Koren (Earth and Planetary Sciences Department of the Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot), an expert in cloud and rain physics; and Prof. Klaus Schilling (the Center for Telematics, Würzburg), a leader in the field of small satellite formation technology

Click here to read the complete press release.
NASA SmallSat News

NASA Receiving Deep Space Data from MarCO CubeSats
MarCO-B, one of the experimental Mars Cube One/MarCO CubeSats, took this image of Mars from about 4,700 miles/7,600 kilometers away, during its flyby of the Red Planet on Nov. 26, 2018. Photo Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA's Insight Spacecraft Lands on Mars
This image depicts the MarCO CubeSats relaying data from NASA's InSight lander as it enters the Martian atmosphere. Photo Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

For more on the Mars landing and NASA Insight Mission, see:

Venture Class Rockets: New Video
For years, tiny CubeSat satellites could only fly into space as hitchhikers, riding along with larger, primary payloads. Now, thanks to Venture Class Launch Services, these small packages of big science are getting their own rides into space on dedicated rockets -- and on their own terms. Rocket Lab USA of Huntington Beach, California, and Virgin Orbit of Long Beach, California, are the two companies poised to propel CubeSats from coach class to first class. 

See this new video on Venture class CubeSats at: ( Music Courtesy of Gothic Storm Music).
Make plans to join JoSS representatives at these events!
SmallSat Symposium 2019
Silicon Valley, California US
February 4-7, 2019
From satellite operators to ground equipment manufactures, government and military users, launch providers, integrators, and end users, there is no doubt that much of the satellite industry will be touched by the disruption SmallSats have created. 

Critical to thriving in a changing environment is understanding how disruptive forces affect your business. The Fourth Annual  SmallSat Symposium, the leading SmallSat business conference, returns to the Silicon Valley Computer History Museum for 2019 to  focus on these issues, as well as new technologies likely to shape the future.

Click here for more information or to register:
2019 IEEE Aerospace Conference
Big Sky, Montana US
March 2-9, 2019
The 2019 IEEE Aerospace Conference will host a session on Planetary Exploration Using Small Spacecraft.

For more information, see:
JoSS: Submit Your Article for Publication
As  a unique scholarly technical journal dedicated to serving the Small Satellite Community, JoSS aims to publish online original high-quality, topical, peer-reviewed articles, legacy articles about contributions made by small satellites pioneers, and letters to the editor (LTEs). The publication of, and access to, these articles is offered FREE OF CHARGE to encourage students and entrepreneurs to expedite rapid publication of and access to their work. 

To this end, we gladly accept original, creative, previously unpublished articles that address one or more of the JoSS technical Topic Areas. You may visit under "Information for Authors" for the list of Topic Areas and guidelines for preparing and submitting your papers for publication. 

Please distribute this important information to others in the field of small satellites!   
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You may purchase advertising on the JoSS website for your announcement or company for a very reasonable price, to reach the full range of the SmallSat community worldwide. As a not-for-profit organization, JoSS appreciates and values your support through the purchase of advertising space. For more information, see
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