October 21, 2019
From October 7 to 9, ABB in Quebec City hosted teams from universities across Canada participating in the Canadian Satellite Design Challenge (CSDC).
The ABB Facility in Quebec City
The teams were participating in the Critical Design Reviews (CDR), which requires a 2.5-hour presentation to be given by each team and includes details of their cubesat satellites and missions. CSDC provides an intensive learning experience of designing a satellite and participating in standard customer-review presentations, such as a CDR, undergone by industry in order to better prepare individuals going into the space field.
This CDR is a milestone event that marks just over one year in the current CSDC competition, in which the mission objective is to design and build “Selfie-Sat”, a cubesat satellite which can take a “space-selfie” photo from space when commanded to do so by amateur radio operators around the world.
At the same time, ABB hosted a workshop to give all the attendees an overview of ABB’s significant space missions experience and a tour of their impressive manufacturing and testing facilities. ABB also organised two “hands-on” workshop sessions, to teach the participants how to solder spacecraft hardware (it isn’t easy!), and to give them an introduction on using spectrometers for analysing the composition of gas samples (or the atmosphere). ABB has extensive heritage manufacturing spectrometers for space missions, including the Canadian SciSat satellite, which continues to operate since its launch in 2003.
In the Design Reviews, the University of Windsor received top marks from the judges, an impressive accomplishment considering that this is only their first time giving a CDR presentation. They were closely followed by the University of British Columbia. The remaining five presenting teams were all grouped within a three percentage point range.
The Reviews were judged by a panel of industry experts, who shared recommendations to each team on how to enhance their designs:
Critical Design Review presentation in progress.
The CSDC Management Society is also extremely grateful to ABB for their wonderful hospitality, in particular William Grand-Maison for organising the workshops, and technicians Richard Lajoie, Eric Eric Smith, Yan Montembeault, and Hugo Borque for sharing their expertise with the attendees. The workshops are a valuable educational experience for the attendees, and are an important element of the mentorship emphasis which the CSDC incorporates.
The space hardware soldering tutorial/workshop.
About the CSDC Management Society:
The CSDC is organised and managed by the Canadian Satellite Design Challenge Management Society Inc. (CSDCMS), a federally-registered not-for-profit organisation which is entirely run by volunteers.
For more information, please contact: