During my time at CentraleSupelec, I participated in a long term project at the school's Center for CubeSats, focusing on the ESUS mission. The ESUS mission, partnered with Thales Alenia Space, focuses on creating a cube sat with a traditional computer GPU as the main computer. This satellite is then put into Low Earth Orbit, and takes pictures of the surface of various points, while processing and scanning the images on board.
My work centered around building the preliminary communications infrastructure for the satellite. A literature review was conducted in order to chose the correct communications bandwidth for the satellite, taking into account attenuation factors such as rain and atmospheric absorption, as well as the available corresponding bandwidth hardware. A communications link budget was created, allowing for precise simulations of the data expected to be received/transmitted for each orbit completed.
This project was particularly interesting for me as I started with no experience or knowledge of radio communication. I faced a steep learning curve, but obtained a worthwhile result with the communications infrastructure analysis. My work was able to provide the other teams of the project with the required information for them to design their systems to match our downlink/uplink capabilities.