High-Performance and Low-Cost – What Other Benefits of CubeSat Cameras

Earth Observation

In today’s time, CubeSat satellites have become some of the most popular types of satellites today; their versatility and small size make them perfect for universities and research companies. A typical CubeSat has a lot of uses ranging from climate monitoring to communications and disaster response.

Apart from the critical components found inside this satellite, like sensors and internal computers, a CubeSat camera externally integrates into the design. In this article, we will talk about the various advantages of using CubeSat cameras.

Table of Contents

What Is CubeSat?

Before we dive into the depth of this article, we need first to understand what a CubeSat camera is. A CubeSat camera is a type of spacecraft that does not measure more than 10cm on each side; U or units denote the 10cm. Larger satellites can measure 2U, 3U, or 6U. Additionally, these satellites do not exceed the weight limit of 1.33kgs and can quickly deploy along with a larger rocket carrying a heavier payload, thereby reducing the launch prices.

In most cases, these satellites work for earth and space observation. However, some are specifically designed to meet other missions like scientific research, tech demonstration, and even commercial-oriented missions. These small satellites are mostly used by smaller companies, learning institutions, and research centers to access space for such reasons.

Of course, these satellites have reduced cost in two significant ways – these satellites do not weigh much, which means you do not require as much fuel as you would for conventional satellites. Of course, these small satellites can also be latched with larger rockets.

How  A CubeSat Satellite Camera Works

In this section, we will learn how does CubeSat camera work. CubeSat optical cameras work in the same way as other optical systems. The camera will capture the object’s reflected signal and store it as a hyperspectral, multispectral, or panchromatic image, which ranges from electromagnetic radiation to visible rays.

One of the best aspects of these cameras is the wide bandwidth. Additionally, the CubeSat camera resolution will be low to ensure more convenient storage. Additionally, you will also be able to create groups, which allows gradient sensing and a larger revisit. In short, you will be able to track the changes in the dynamics more accurately.

What Are Some Benefits Of CubeSat Cameras?

There are many types of services that can be provided from space. Depending on the nature/type of your business, here are some crucial benefits of the CubeSat camera:

1.   Accessibility

For a very long time, only a handful of significant multinationals and countries have had the financial backup and the human/technical capacity to access the realms of space. The introduction of CubeSats has changed this scenario. Today, satellite camera companies are available for all types of countries and companies, thanks to reducing space barriers.

2.   Affordable Pricing

Yes, satellite cameras can cost you roughly more than $200 million. In the case of CubeSat satellites, the cost should not be more than $400,000. Of course, the overall pricing of the CubeSat will also depend on the CubeSat camera size, type of mission, etc. The pricing gets reduced significantly if you plan on launching a constellation of CubeSat satellites.

3.   Faster Development

In today’s time, the space industry is all about the ability to start a project quickly. Conventional satellites often have more extended development periods (in most cases, between 5 and 15 years). If you plan to release a constellation, it does not take more than eight months to develop a CubeSat satellite; as for the replicas, the waiting period is just two months.

4.   More Control

In the case of conventional satellites, most companies had to make use of third-party satellites. This means that there was a certain level of dependence on these intermediaries, which also implies that there was a lack of control over certain aspects that can have a direct impact on the offered services. In the case of CubeSat cameras, small companies can launch them without depending on intermediaries; this also ensures more control over the services.

5.   Great Data Security

This point can be read in conjunction with the above-mentioned point. When working with third-party providers, there is always a risk of your information getting hacked or get transmitted. This is particularly important if the data is a strategic or sensitive one for a company or a government. In the case of CubeSat cameras, the lack of involvement of third parties ensures that your data and information are safe; these satellites also prevent various types of other problems like potential leakage, etc.

6.   Standing Out From The Competition

If you want to stand out from other companies in the same market or niche, you can do so by employing a constellation of CubeSat camera modules. This will provide you with various competitive advantages as well. Companies also have the opportunity to diversify and expand their services and explore new business areas.

Final Thoughts

As we can see from the above, the size of the CubeSat satellite and cameras make them so popular today. Additionally, they also provide a lot more benefits than their conventional counterparts. It is safe to say that such satellites are the future since they are cheaper, better, and more advanced alternatives than traditional satellites. You will get only high-quality images from these satellites that can be used for various fields like communication, disaster management, military, weather forecast, etc.