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What are CubeSats?

What are CubeSats?

CubeSats are a class of research spacecraft called nanosatellites. They provide low-cost opportunities for small satellite payloads to fly on rockets planned for upcoming launches. Small satellites, including CubeSats, are playing an increasingly larger role in exploration, technology demonstration, scientific research and educational investigations here at NASA. 


Fourteen miniature satellites were deployed from the International Space Station earlier this week. Two of the CubeSats were Danish and have communication and ship signal tracking capabilities. The remaining are Dove satellites from Planet Labs and will take images of Earth from space.

On Thursday, Oct. 8, thirteen CubeSats are scheduled to launch aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket at 8:49 a.m. EDT. Watch live on NASA TV starting at 8:29 a.m.

To learn more about tomorrow’s launch, watch NASA Television today, Oct. 7 at 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. EDT. The briefings will highlight the growing importance of CubeSats in space exploration.

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