Topic outline

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    Mission creation mind map

    Mind Map

    Overview of the course

    The course gives basic knowledge about spacecraft design principles, focusing primarily on systems engineering of small satellites. The systems engineer has to be able to take into consideration all aspects of a space instrument design process, such as space environment, technical challenges and even political environment. The course gives basic tools for systems engineering and gives overview of spacecraft structure, testing, payload, thermal design, launch, rocket technology and space project management. Moreover, every student designs a his/her own small satellite mission during the course. 


    The course is based loosely on book:

    • Peter Fortescue, John Stark, Graham Swiner: Spacecraft Systems Engineering, 3rd Edition, Wiley 2003 (or newer).
    • You can access the digital copy here.


    • Jaan Praks
    • Petri Niemelä
    • Kiril Cheremetiev
    • Mayank
    • Marius Anger

    Responsible teacher

    Jaan Praks
    Assistant Professor 

    Last year course homepage.

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    Final presentation table

    The project work in this course is feasibility study of a satellite mission. The project will give all together 80 points and the work can be done in groups max 3 students. 

    Project template:

    Project Schedule

    NB. Project work deadlines are not hard-deadlines. You can submit also a bit later and you will not loose much points. 

    • 30.3.2023 Mission idea review (10 p)

      • Motivation and objectives, Requirements

    • 13.4.2023 Mission concept review (10 p) 

      • Requirement analysis, Payloads, Mission overview

    • 27.4.2023 Preliminary Design Review (10 p)

      • Spacecraft design

    • 4.5.2023  Detailed Design Review (10 p)

      • Spacecraft design and Product Assurance

    • 18.5.2023 Project Implementation review (10 p)

      • Spacecraft development description

    • 5.6.2023 Final Presentation (20 p report, 10 p presentation)


    For every review please submit a PDF of your report (current version) which sould contain also link to the project material. 

    Grading guideline

    • 20% - feasibility

    • 60% - technical implementation

    • 20% - documentation quality