The Michigan Engineer News Center

Satellites in a box

CubeSats are sparking innovation and providing easier access to space.| Short Read

About this Video

The Radio Aurora Explorer (RAX) mission has proven that scientific information can be gathered from a CubeSat, which is a small satellite encased within a box and attached to a spacecraft to achieve orbit. The scientific data gathered by RAX has been published in peer-reviewed science journals. CubeSats are sparking innovation and providing easier access to space, according to aerospace engineering professor Jamie Cutler. The value of CubeSats is their ability to test technology and get into space at a low price point and with little risk involved, says Cutler.

A CubeSat is a small satellite encased within a box and attached to a spacecraft to achieve orbit, sparking innovation and providing low cost, low risk access to space.
EnlargePortrait of James Cutler.
IMAGE:  Portrait of James Cutler. Photo: Joseph Xu, Michigan Engineering

About the Professor

James Cutler an associate professor in the Aerospace Engineering Department at the University of Michigan. His research interests center on space systems — a multidisciplinary approach to enabling future space capability with particular emphasis on novel, nanosatellite missions. He is developing next-generation communication capability and robust space computing infrastructure. He is the director of the Michigan Exploration Laboratory.

Portrait of James Cutler.
Portrait of Kim Johnson

Contact

Kimberly Johnson
Communications Manager

Aerospace Engineering

(734) 647-4701

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The electrons absorb laser light and set up “momentum combs” (the hills) spanning the energy valleys within the material (the red line). When the electrons have an energy allowed by the quantum mechanical structure of the material—and also touch the edge of the valley—they emit light. This is why some teeth of the combs are bright and some are dark. By measuring the emitted light and precisely locating its source, the research mapped out the energy valleys in a 2D crystal of tungsten diselenide. Credit: Markus Borsch, Quantum Science Theory Lab, University of Michigan.

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