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The CanSat mission
Scientists and engineers have to work together to create the best satellite design. The scientific aim of your mission will directly affect how your CanSat should be engineered. Here, you will find the outline of your mission and hints to the hardware components you should include.
The team must build a CanSat and program it to accomplish the primary mission to measure, after release and during descent, the following parameters:
• Air temperature
• Air pressure
This year, teams must store this data in an on-board SD card in order to be eligible for the European CanSat Competition 2020-21 launch campaign. For the National Competitions, it is at the discretion of the National Organisers to decide whether the data should be stored in an on-board SD card and/or transmitted to ground.
The secondary mission of the CanSat must be selected by the team. Teams can take ideas from real satellite missions or collect scientific data for a specific project, make a technology demonstration for a student-designed component, or any other mission that would fit inside the CanSat and show its capabilities. Teams are invited to take inspiration from ESA missions for designing their own secondary missions.
Some example secondary missions:
When coming up with your mission concept and hardware components, think if there is additional data you would like to retrieve and analyse, e.g.
• GPS location
• Radiation levels
It can be very important for the scientists and engineers to recover their payload, therefore a targeted landing is sometimes necessary. Your CANSat design could include advanced telemetry/telecommand to help navigate a targeted landing. Alternatively your CANSat could incorporate a bespoke parachute or airbag.
Your CANSat can simulate an exploration flight to a new planet, taking measurements on the ground after landing. You should define your exploration mission and identify the parameters necessary to accomplish it (e.g. pressure, temperature, samples of the terrain, humidity, etc.). This may require additional sensors to be included into your CANSat design.
The CANSat casing design is a great way to add some artistic flare. However, all the amazing science is happening using the technology inside. Your CANSat design should show what sensors, electronics and communication hardware that you will use. There are a variety of Consumer-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) hardware available, therefore, you should design your CANSat with your specific components in mind.
*Due to the current COVID-19 travel restrictions, the European CanSat Competition 2020-21 Launch Campaign will be run by ESA and followed remotely by the winning teams. It has therefore been decided to remove the requirement of transmission to a ground station in order to ease the execution of the European Launch Campaign.
You can find more information about what components to use here