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Open AccessArticle

Modular Multifunctional Composite Structure for CubeSat Applications: Preliminary Design and Structural Analysis

1
Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Politecnico di Torino, 10129 Torino, Italy
2
Department of Electronics and Telecommunications, Politecnico di Torino, 10129 Torino, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Aerospace 2020, 7(2), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7020017
Received: 29 November 2019 / Revised: 11 February 2020 / Accepted: 21 February 2020 / Published: 24 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 9th EASN International Conference on Innovation in Aviation & Space)
CubeSats usually adopt aluminum alloys for primary structures, and a number of studies exist on Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic (CFRP) primary structures. The internal volume of a spacecraft is usually occupied by battery arrays, reducing the volume available to the payload. In this paper, a CFRP structural/battery array configuration has been designed in order to integrate the electrical power system with the spacecraft bus primary structure. The configuration has been designed according to the modular design philosophy introduced in the AraMiS project. The structure fits on an external face of a 1U CubeSat. Its external side houses two solar cells and the opposite side houses power system circuitry. An innovative cellular structure concept has been adopted and a set of commercial LiPo batteries has been embedded between two CFRP panels and spaced out with CFRP ribs. Compatibility with launch mechanical loads and vibrations has been shown with a finite element analysis. The results suggest that, even with a low degree of structural integration applied to a composite structural battery, more volume and mass can be made available for the payload, with respect to traditional, functionally separated structures employing aluminum alloy. The low degree of integration is introduced to allow the use of relatively cheap and commercial-off-the-shelf components. View Full-Text
Keywords: CubeSat; CFRP; structural integration; functional integration; structural battery; embedded battery CubeSat; CFRP; structural integration; functional integration; structural battery; embedded battery
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MDPI and ACS Style

Capovilla, G.; Cestino, E.; Reyneri, L.M.; Romeo, G. Modular Multifunctional Composite Structure for CubeSat Applications: Preliminary Design and Structural Analysis. Aerospace 2020, 7, 17.

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