CubeSat Communications System Table
Bryan Klofas, bklofas (at) gmail.com
Updated 22 Nov 2018
This effort grew out of two papers I wrote about communication systems of the CubeSats on orbit. The first paper included the CubeSats launched from 2003 to 2008, and the second paper included the satellites launched from 2009 to September 2012. I intend this document to be updated whenever new information becomes available. Please contact me if you have updates. The table prints on ANSI C-sized paper, which is 17 by 22 inches.
For more information about these satellites, check out:
As of November 23rd, 2018, there have been 757 CubeSats deployed in space from 90 deployments. This works out to 1937 Units of CubeSats from 0.25U to 12U form factors.
- Version 17/Latest. 23 Nov 2018. Added MarCo, various Cygnus OA-9 deployments, Long March, and Rocket Lab launches.
- Version 16. 29 Apr 2018. Added the recent JPSS-1, ISS, PSLV-C40, RocketLab, and various Chinese launches.
- Version 15. 7 Aug 2017. Added the QB50 satellites, Soyuz, PSLV-C38, and LongMarch-7 launches.
- Version 14. 28 Feb 2017. Launch madness! Added five Chinese launches, three ISS deployments, and two PSLV launches, including the 101 CubeSats on the PSLV-C37.
- Version 13. 16 Aug 2016. Added the "second" Cygnus OA-6 partial deployment of four Lemur CubeSats, and also added the PSLV-C34 launch with Indian CubeSats and more Doves.
- Version 12. 17 June 2016. Added the two May 2016 ISS deployments, whose CubeSats were brought up on earlier Cygnus launches. I also removed the "Downloaded" and "Lifetime" columns, as it's been increasingly difficult to get any information about megabytes downloaded from the satellites or how long they actually lived in space.
- Version 11. 15 May 2016. Added PSLV-C29, Bevo-2, and two Soyuz launches. Also removed Dove-4 from the list, she's still stuck inside Unisat-5.
- Version 10. 14 April 2016. Added ULTRASat, PSLV-C28/C30, Long March, GRACE, and several ISS deployments.
- Version 9. 10 March 2015. Added SMAP/ELaNa-10 and the latest three ISS deployments. Also added GomX-1 to the previous ISILaunch-03, I just forgot about her!
- Version 8. 8 Aug 2014. SmallSat update! Added the latest H2-A, CRS-3, Dnepr, PSLV-C23, and Soyuz launches. Thanks to everybody at SmallSat that helped me complete the table.
- Version 7. 25 Feb 2014. Added the Nanoracks Orb-1/ISS launch CubeSats, and removed the PocketQubs. I decided that this table will only include real CubeSats, including 6Us when they start launching.
- Version 6. 31 Jan 2014. Includes updates on the Dnepr CubeSats from Graham Shirville G3VZV.
- Version 5. 8 Jan 2014. Added preliminary info for the ISS and ORS-3 CubeSats, and added names and frequencies for the Dnepr and NROL-39 CubeSats.
- Version 4. 9 Aug 2013. With updates to the status of the latest CubeSats launched, and updates to the Planet Labs and PhoneSat cubesats.
- Version 3. 23 May 2013. Added latest ESTCube-1 launch on Vega VV02.
- Version 2. 30 April 2013. Added preliminary info about the latest Soyuz, Antares Demo, and Long March-2D launches.
- Version 1. 29 April 2013. With updates from talking with people at the workshop.
- Original. 21 April 2013. A combined list of the tables from the first and second survey papers. It also includes the ISS and PSLV-C20 launch. This version was printed out and presented at the 2013 CubeSat Developers Workshop.
- Deployment indicates what day the CubeSats were deploy in space. For most satellites, this is the launch date. For ISS deployments, this column indicates the rocket used to get to the station, and the day the satellites left the station. Satellites may stay on the station for 6 months or longer before deployment.
- Object refers to the spacecraft ID number in the NORAD database, available at Space-Track. Some of the launches with sensitive primary satellites do not have keps posted, so refer to the sponsoring organization's web page. A + indicates there are several identical CubeSats, each with a different spacecraft ID number.
- Size indicates how big the CubeSat is. A + indicates that the spacecraft used the extra volume inside the spring, commonly referred to as the "tuna can" or "hockey puck" volume.
- TNC (terminal node controller) indicates the processor that accepts raw data bits, and packetizes/formats the data for consumption by the radio.
- For Data Rate/Modulation, remember that the symbol rate (baud) is not necessarily the same as the data rate (bps), and cannot be directly compared.
- Lifetime refers to the length of the useful life of the satellite.
- Status refers to the satellite's status, as of the Date in the last column:
- Deorbited: The spacecraft has deorbited.
- DOA: Dead on Arrival. This satellite was never heard from in space.
- Dead: Spacecraft is now no longer transmitting.
- Alive: Satellite is beaconing data, but not achieving its mission, or the mission has ended.
- Active: CubeSat is performing its intended mission.
- Updated is the date on which the data was updated and verified.
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Updated 23 Nov 2018.