Our team was recently at ActiveSpace’s facilities to perform the thermal balance tests on our spacecraft. Although our students developed a theoretical model to simulate what temperatures will the satellite’s components suffer when in orbit, it’s necessary to undergo such tests to prove that the modeled temperatures match up with reality.
Our students placed a number of sensors on key components in the subsystems, such as microcontrollers, batteries or power amplifiers. Afterwards, the satellite was placed inside a vacuum chamber, where it would experience a set of known conditions.
With the sensors, and knowing which conditions the satellite is experiencing, it’s possible to study the evolution of the temperature in different components and check if it matches our models. This will help the team to better understand temperature distribution inside the spacecraft, and the problems that may arise with it.