UGA Small Satellite

By Dr. David Cotten

  • $125.00

    Funded. Goal: $10,000.00

  • 2


All contributions will be collected automatically until Apr 15, 2018, 7AM EST.

For the first time in history, The University of Georgia is going to space – and it’s the students who are taking us there! These students will make history for the university by providing it with its first ever spacecraft, ground station, and space systems research lab. Our goal is to place UGA among the top space faring Universities in the world and to give UGA a permanent presence in outer space. We want to teach students how to build satellites and space ready payloads. UGA, and its students are part of the modern space race that uses small satellites called CubeSats to perform ground breaking science and push the limits of our technological capabilities in outer space.

The project itself is student-built and student-led. In conjunction with university professors and resources, students are building the first cube satellites to perform a moderate resolution multispectral analysis and high performance computing in low earth orbit.

Your donation, will give us the opportunity to build a sustainable undergraduate led research laboratory that is capable of designing and building these two CubeSats as well as making UGA a viable contender for future satellite missions.

The undergraduate students have also been very active in outreach and recruitment activities: hosting a workshop related to empowering women in STEM, participating in a three day workshop with NSF LISEL-B teachers to help communicate science to middle and high school students, serving as guest lecturers at Cedar Shoals High School presenting on orbital mechanics, giving four guest lectures around campus, and hosting prospective students from Morgan County schools.

Why This Project Matters

In early 2018 the student team in the UGA Small Satellite Research Laboratory (SSRL) was selected as one of only two winner of the US Air Force Research Laboratory University Nanosatellite Program (Competition NS-9) Flight Selection Review for our 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 for Integration and Test of the University’s spacecraft. 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!

UGA is the first team to be selected on their first UNP iteration and we are a team that is all undergraduate students except for one graduate student. As for the path forward, we are expected to have the satellite build and delivered to the Air Force Research Laboratory  in two years. The students represented UGA wonderfully and numerous industry, government, and academic representatives said that our students are in the top of their class.

We are building a foundation here at UGA. Soon, the Small Satellite Research Laboratory will make UGA one of the best space-capable universities in the world. Make your gift to support the students who are making this happen.

Where We Are Now

These and future projects in the lab will provide a unique opportunity to enhance the growth of UGA educational programs by exposing undergraduates to the challenges of space exploration, communication with objects in orbit around the Earth, creating more experiential learning opportunities for classes, helping students transition into the STEM related workforce, and attracting new students to the University. More information about these projects can be found at

Overall the long-term goals of the Small Satellite Research Lab are similar to the University of Georgia’s motto. SSRL aims to teach, to develop, and to discover through undergraduate involvement. For years to come the lab hopes to continue: teaching students how to build and use space ready equipment, developing the local community by getting local K-12 students interested in both space exploration and the University, and discovering, by using space based equipment to observe phenomenon on Earth from an orbital perspective through national funding opportunities, creating new technologies that can be used on future missions, and demonstrating how small satellite systems can make large scientific discoveries.

Support UGA students navigate to space by making a gift today.


Contact Wendy Aina | | 706.542.4658

  1. Yuqing Dai
    $100.00 03/07/18 @ 4:09 pm
  2. Tristan Schuler
    $25.00 03/19/18 @ 3:52 pm
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