Argus GTO

Argus GTO


Kate Bartlett

Ashley Fleming

Blake Bolda (Team Lead)

Rikin Parikh

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The Argus program will improve the predictive modeling of radiation effects on modern space electronics devices by recording events caused by radiation particle collisions with electronics monitoring experiments operating in the geostastionary transfer orbit and relaying the data to the ground.


Develop a spacecraft capable of operating in the Van Allen Belts, while carrying a sensitive payload.

Project Description

As new technology is being developed, it is becoming more obvious that the space performance modeling needs to be revisited. Electronics having a scale less than sixty-five nanometers do not have any useful modeling. It has become exceedingly difficult to test these new electronics on the ground because of rising laboratory costs and long testing processes. At this point, sending the electronics into space and monitoring their performance is a more affordable method. If a spacecraft can be designed to operate in the Van Allen Belts, monitoring equipment can be placed on the spacecraft to collect performance data. This data can then be collected by a ground team so that better performance models may be created.

Major Driving Requirements

  • Radiation particle collision event tracking
  • Transfer data to processing/communication system
  • Safely store data
  • Operate for a period of six months
  • Structure must be radiation hardened
  • Volume and weight must fit one of three different configurations: 3u (10x10x30 cm^3, <5kg), 6u (<10x20x30 cm^3, <17kg), ESPA (<50x50x60 cm^3, <200kg)
  • Must operate in geostationary transfer orbit (GTO)