The Space Systems Division develops small satellites (namely CubeSats) for space research. The team's strengths derive from its historic expertise in low-cost, modular engineering design and the development of space life science payloads. The team worked on the first iteration, HERON MK I, during 2014-16. The team decided to tackle another iteration in 2016 to improve upon the last design. 

With the support of the University of Toronto (St. George) students, UTAT was able to secure a student levy to fund the launch and development of the next iteration of the cubesat, HERON MK II. The team is aiming to launch the finished cubesat in 2019.

Subsystems OVERVIEW

 Integrated HERON astrobiology CubeSat3U at the 2016 CSDC, solar panels detached

Integrated HERON astrobiology CubeSat3U at the 2016 CSDC, solar panels detached

Primary Subsystems:

  • Structures - Responsible for all mechanical features within the satellite, including the primary and secondary payload structure, as well as the payload structural elements
  • Command and Data Handling - Brain of the satellite, handling satellite control and the exchange of information and between subsystems
  • Thermal - Models the spacecraft temperature over the course of an orbit, and selects materials to maintain acceptable spacecraft temperatures
  • Power - Controls power generation via solar panels, and distributes this power to the other on-board systems
  • Attitude Determination & Control (ADCS) - Ensures spacecraft is oriented optimally for communications, thermal loading, and power generation
  • Communications - Responsible for the transmission of all data between the satellite and the ground station
  • Payload - Develops and integrates the technology from which the mission purpose is derived, which in the past has included astrobiology experiments and in-space communications links

Upcoming Competitions

Canadian Satellite Design Challenge 2018

Projects & Achievements

2014-2016: HERON Astrobiology CubeSat 

2017: Secured student levy across U of T campus for launch and development

Team Members

Katie Gwozdecky
Division Lead

Victor Nechita
Project Manager

Ali Haydaroglu
Division Lead

Avinash Mukkala
Payload Lead

Dylan Vogel
Chief Systems Designer

  Joanna Hon   Thermal Lead

Joanna Hon

Thermal Lead

Addy Bhatia

ADCS & Structures Lead

Kimberly Ren
Micro-fluidics Lead

  Margaret Tkatchenko   Structures Lead

Margaret Tkatchenko

Structures Lead

Siddharth Mahendraker
Ground Station Lead

Shrey Parikh          Command & Data Handling Lead

Haley Tomassini-Blinn
Antenna Lead


This page was last updated March 7th, 2018