Call for Papers

The growth of small satellites has been fueled by the promise of shorter development cycles, lower cost, new technology, and more frequent access to space. As on-orbit results pave the way, small satellites are increasingly being considered for critical, high-value missions. These are taking the form of emerging applications with highly constrained payload requirements, new system architectures that seek operational resiliency, and numerous other user-driven conditions for availability. With affordability and responsive timelines being a classic imperative for small satellite missions, appropriate technical and programmatic approaches must match these expectations. Developers are now seeking innovative ways to increase the odds of mission success by employing diverse design techniques, autonomy methods, and streamlined processes that help identify and mitigate potential issues. However, a balance must be found between lessons learned and new concepts that achieve mission success.

During the 32nd AIAA/USU Conference on Small Satellites, we will explore the new technologies, design methods, processes, operational constructs, and activities that inform and secure the success of small satellite missions.

Pre-Conference Workshop

Educational and research programs, lessons learned, tutorials and Cubesat technology will be the main focus of the weekend sessions.

Technical Sessions

Weekday presentations focus on cutting-edge technologies and missions supporting small satellite endeavors.


Selected participants will be given three minutes for a flash talk on their chosen topic during breaks from the Technical Sessions.

Poster Sessions

Printed posters will be hung for a full-day, and there will be twice-daily dedicated viewing times.

Session Topics

Delivering Mission Success

Engineering design processes, testing, verification, or operational approaches that are consistent with small satellite programmatics, that can increase the overall mission success of small satellite missions.

Assuring the Space Ecosystem

Small satellite missions and their relationship to mission success, the sustainability of space, space situational awareness, space traffic management, and licensing and regulation.

Next on the pad

A preview of missions that are scheduled to fly within the next 18 months, with an emphasis on the missions and their scientific or technological purpose.

Year in Review

A review of missions that have been launched in the past 18 months, with an emphasis on lessons learned and/or the technological advancements that significantly enhanced mission utility.

Space Access

Launch systems, rideshares, or multi-manifest opportunities that are specifically designed to provide access to space for small satellites.

Ground Systems

Innovative technologies or systems (hardware or software) for ground networks, mission operations centers, or science/data analysis that provide significant advances in mission utility.

Science/Mission Payloads

Innovative technologies or systems that enable cutting-edge missions to be formulated.

Educational Programs

Educational programs, approaches, or philosophies that benefit the development of engineers and/or scientists through the use of small satellite technologies.

Advanced Technologies

Innovative technologies (hardware or software) that provide significant capability advancements in small satellite missions.

Abstract Submittal

Deadline February 8, 2018