Development of the evolved common hardware bus (TECHBus)
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This thesis presents the design and analysis of a small spacecraft bus for use by the Georgia Tech Space Systems Design Lab. It is designed with research projects in mind, and levies the previous design work of The University of Texas at Austin's Texas Spacecraft Lab. The bus offers capabilities that are competitive to currently available commercial small spacecraft busses. The system has been designed with a variety of missions in mind, and is shown to be capable of completing several past missions that each had a customized spacecraft bus. Additional effort was placed into improving the bus' robustness and reliability to a level that has yet to be realized on CubeSats. Redundant components and software algorithms are utilized to ensure system functionality in the event of a component failure. The spacecraft bus has also been developed with the university engineering and research environment in mind. The student-built system's reliability and integrity is developed over the course of many tests, rigorous quality assurance processes, and through the use of heritage flight components. The redundancy and system integration architecture offers an unmatched 98% reliability value for one year missions; this is a 22% increase over typical single-string architectures. Each payload accommodated and each mission flown will add to the bus' heritage as approximately 95% of the spacecraft bus hardware is common between missions. For these reasons, the TECHBus is a novel system that is unique in the current CubeSat bus market, and will provide a powerful platform for space systems research and education at Georgia Tech's Space Systems Design Lab.