Theses2019-04-02T14:35:46+00:00

Theses

Orbit invites both master and bachelor students interested in space technology to write their thesis on our projects. If you want to write your paper on an actual satellite project that will be launched into space, check out the available theses below! For further information, please contact our thesis coordinator Kristian Borgen at knborgen@orbitntnu.com.

Mechanics Theses

Radio heatsink - Project + Master Thesis
Orbit NTNU is building a smallsat which will be launched into low earth orbit. The satellite contains a UHF communications radio which will transmit data to a groundstation several times per day with a duration of 10 minutes per transmit period.

The radio will need a custom made heatsink and radiator in order to be able to operate. The student will work on designing and prototyping a heatsink+radiator solution and verifying this by simulation or tests in vacuum and thermal chambers.

The heatsink must interface with the radio PCB, ensuring that there isn’t too much tension on the PCB and that there is adequate thermal coupling. There is existing documentation on this from the manufacturer which can be used as a starting point. The sink must also interface with the satellite frame or a radiator plate through heat pipes, both which must be possible to couple during integration (cannot be permanently attached as “one” component.)

The satellite configuration provides clear constraints on heatsink volume, radiator surface area and maximum radio temperature.

ADCS Thesis

Calibrating Methods for Attitude, Determination and Control System Sensors - Project + Master Thesis
Orbit NTNU is building a small satellite that will be launched into low earth orbit. The satellite contains an attitude determination and control system which determines the satellite’s orbit and orientation through orbit models and sensor measurements and controls the orientation by actuating magnetorquers.

The attitude determination and control system has several sensors such as magnetometers, gyrometers, sun sensors and temperature sensors. These sensors must be calibrated, both when in an earth and space environment in order to provide reliable measurements.

The student will work on developing calibration methods for both the earth and space environment. The space calibration can run live on the satellite or use offline solutions which use downlinked telemetry data. It is suggested that the task is split such that earth calibration is finished during the fall project and space calibration is done as a masters thesis.

ADCS Hardware in the Loop - Project + Master Thesis
Orbit NTNU is building a small satellite that will be launched into low earth orbit. The satellite contains a attitude determination and control system which is being developed at NTNU.

The ADCS control algorithms are being tested on a hardware in the loop system which provides simulated environmental data such that the system can be properly tested.

A masters on this system can take their thesis is various directions. It is possible to improve the existing HIL simulation, use the HIL to test and verify the attitude controller or expand the hardware in the loop system to include other parts of the satellite such as the communication system, flight computer or the electrical power system.

Onboard Computer

Software architecture design for ground station and onboard computer, Project+Master
Orbit NTNU is building a small satellite that will be launched into low earth orbit. The satellite contains a flight computer with a OS developed at NTNU. Orbit also operates a groundstation used to communicate with satellites.

Both of these systems need a software architecture which is suited for the given usecase. This involves researching existing solutions and choosing one which can be adapted to our satellite mission.

This is a assignment which provides a large degree of freedom. Both the flight computer and groundstation contains numerous systems that can be focused on in addition to a more overarching software architecture.

Memory protection on flash and SD card / ECC implementation - Project + Master Thesis

Orbit NTNU is building a small satellite that will be launched into low earth orbit. The satellite contains a 3 microcontrollers that are developed at NTNU.

The space environment has increased amounts of radiation that will damage components and cause temporary bit flips which eventually will corrupt stored data. Therefore the microcontrollers on a satellite must have fault tolerant memory which is able to detect and mitigate memory failures. This can be achieved by ECC methods such as redundant memory, data comparison and checksums.

The assignment involves researching possible solutions for fault tolerant data storage, and implementation and testing of the chosen solution.

It is suggested that possible solutions are researched during the fall project, while implementation and testing is done as a master thesis.

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