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UGA Small Satellite Research Lab (SSRL) Wins US Air Force Research Lab University Nanosatellite Program Flight Selection Review

August 16, 2018

The UGA SSRL was selected as one of only two winners of the competition for their MOCI (Multi-view Onboard Computational Imager) spacecraft.

SSRL Student Team with Supervisor David L. Cotten, Ph.D, Col. Russell Teehan (Director of the Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles Directorate and the commander of Phillips Research Site at Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M) and Dr David Voss (Program Manager, University Nanosat Program at Air Force Research Laboratory)

In early 2018 the UGA Small Satellite Research Laboratory (SSRL) was selected as one of only two winners of the US Air Force Research Laboratory University Nanosatellite Program (Competition NS-9) Flight Selection Review for their MOCI (Multi-view Onboard Computational Imager) spacecraft.

The Flight Selection Review is the culmination of two years of work that multiple universities have been participating in over Phase A (Design and Development) of each University’s proposed spacecraft. Only the most promising designs and teams are selected to proceed to the UNP Phase B where final integration, and testing of the University’s spacecraft will be conducted before launch. UGA was one of the only two selected for the maturity of its design, the relevance of its mission to national needs, and the promise of its technology!

The ten schools in the competition were:

  • UGA
  • MIT
  • University of New York at Buffalo
  • United States Naval Academy
  • Missouri Science and Technology
  • University of Minnesota
  • Michigan Tech
  • Western Michigan University
  • University of Colorado Boulder
  • University of Arizona

Only UGA and the University of Colorado Boulder were selected as the winners. UC Boulder has numerous other satellites, they have won a UNP competition before, and the majority of their team is comprised of graduate students. While UGA is the first team to be selected on their first UNP iteration and we are a team that consists of all undergraduate students except for one graduate student.

As for the path forward. SSRL is expected to have the satellite built, ready for launch, and delivered to the Air Force Research Laboratory in two years. PI Dr. David Cotten said. "The students represented UGA wonderfully and I was told by numerous industry, government, and academic representatives that our students are in the top of their class."