Space Technology


Project Facts

Project NameApplied curricula in space exploration and intelligent robotic systems
Contact PersonProf. Dr.-Ing. Klaus Briess & Dipl.-Ing. Dmitriy Ostroverkhov

Dis­tribut­ed satel­lite sys­tems like mega-con­stel­la­tions, for­ma­tion fly­ing or swarms en­able no­vel ap­pli­ca­tions, but they are on­ly eco­nom­i­cal when us­ing high­ly minia­tur­ized but still high-ca­pac­i­ty space­crafts. Minia­tur­iza­tion is achieved by mul­ti­func­tion com­po­nent as­sem­bly, the uti­liza­tion of com­mer­cial off-the-shelf parts as well as the im­ple­men­ta­tion of pow­er sup­ply and com­mu­ni­ca­tion bus­es.

Es­sen­tial func­tions of a dis­tri­but­ed sys­tem are the com­mu­ni­ca­tion and the rel­a­tive nav­i­ga­tion among the satel­lites. At TU Berlin a pi­co­satel­lite swarm mis­sion is de­vel­oped con­sist­ing of the four quar­ter-unit CubeSats BEESAT-5 to BEESAT-8 with a mass of 375 grams each. The pi­co­satel­lites were de­signed ful­ly re­dun­dant and al­most com­plete sin­gle-fault tol­er­ant.

The pri­ma­ry mis­sion ob­jec­tive is to demon­strate a new­ly de­vel­oped com­mu­ni­ca­tions sub­sys­tem in the UHF band and an ex­per­i­men­tal GNSS re­ceiv­er. Fur­ther­more, the satel­lites contain a mul­ti­func­tion op­ti­cal at­ti­tude de­ter­mi­na­tion sen­sor and are equipped with cor­ner cube re­flec­tors on all sides for laser rang­ing from ground.

The satel­lite swarm was launched in­to a low sun-syn­chronous or­bit on March, 22, 2021. The flight re­sults and the ver­i­fied com­po­nents will be used for fu­ture na­no­satel­lite for­ma­tion and swarm mis­sions of TU Berlin. The identical flight spare models BEESAT-10 to BEESAT-13 were launched in advance on 2019-07-05 with Soyuz-Fregat free of charge by EXOLAUNCH GmbH.


  • Baumann, F.; Korn, N.; Pirschel, K.; Wolf, R.; Brieß, K. (2017). A Picosatellite Swarm for Technology Demonstration (IAC-17-B4.6B.7). 68th International Astronautical Congress (IAC), Adelaide (Australia), 25–29 September.
  • Korn, N.; Baumann, F.; Wolf, R.; Brieß, K. (2017). Multifunctional Optical Attitude Determination Sensor for Picosatellites (IAC-17-C1.1.9). 68th International Astronautical Congress (IAC), Adelaide (Australia), 25–29 September.