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Spacecraft Research News

CUSAT Scheduled for Launch
08 Aug 12 CUSat is scheduled to launch in early Spring 2013 from Vandenburg Air Force base in California. The team continues hardware and software testing and mission operation planning.
Mason Peck Appointed NASA Chief Technologist
01 Jan 12 Peck will serve as the agency’s principal advisor and advocate on matters concerning technology policy and programs.


Flux Pinning Spacecraft Featured on National Geographic
09 June 11 Flux-pinned spaceceraft make a debut on National Geographic's show "The Known Universe" in a feature on space construction.
Cornell mini-satellites to ride on shuttle
12 May 11 The Sprite ChipSat's upcoming launch on Space Shuttle Endeavour has been featured in the Ithaca Journal.
Sprite Featured in Christian Science Monitor
29 Apr 11 The "Cracker-size Satellite" has been featured in an article in The Christian Science Monitor.
Sprite Featured on Centauri Dreams
28 Apr 11 The Sprite "ChipSat" has been featured in an article on Centauri Dreams, the news forum of the Tau Zero Foundation.
CUSat and Violet Featured in Cornell Engineering Magazine
10 Apr 11 The CUSat and Violet Spacecraft have been featured in an article on page 18 of the Spring 2011 Cornell Engineering Magazine.
Revolutionary high-agility satellite places second in national competition
3 Mar 11 The Violet spacecraft is featured in a Cornell Chronicle article.


Dr. Peck Promoted to Associate Professor
17 Nov 10 Dr. Mason Peck has been promoted to Associate Professor on the faculty of the Cornell University College of Engineering.
Brainstorming a Mission to Europa
19 Aug 10 has an article on one SSDS grad student's concept for a mission to search for life under the ice crust of Jupiter's moon Europa.
NASA Office of the Chief Technologist features SSDS projects
13 Jul 10 In a presentation at an industry forum, the NASA Office of the Chief Technologist cited a Cornell Space Systems Design Studio project as an example of a former NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts grant recipient that has progressed to technology demonstration programs. More about the OCT Industry Forum.
Cornell SSDS Team Selected for Reduced-Gravity Flight Testing
18 May 10 NASA selected 17 technology demonstration projects for reduced-gravity aircraft flights to demonstrate whether emerging technologies can perform as expected in the reduced-gravity environment of the moon and Mars, or the zero-gravity environment of Earth orbit. View the complete list of selected projects.
Cornell attends first-ever 'Chip Satellite Conference'
18 Feb10 Cornell's Space Systems Design Studio was pleased to actively participate in the first-ever conference dedicated to 'Chip Satellites', which was hosted by Brown University. The Cornell team presented research on the mission opportunities afforded by small spacecraft and unveiled their current prototype.
New Scientist: Smart dust could give early warning of space storms
05 Feb10 Mason Peck, a mechanical engineer at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, and his colleague Justin Atchison have designed a 1-centimetre-square spacecraft that is 25 micrometres thick and weighs under 7.5 milligrams. The craft is modelled on the dust particles that orbit the sun and are propelled by the photons streaming out from the sun.


Cornell Chronicle: Students test their touchless attraction technology in near-zero gravity flight
27 Oct 09 A team of Cornell researchers led by Mason Peck, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, recently tested their work on the mysterious physical phenomenon of flux pinning aboard a near-zero gravity aircraft.
Flux-Pinned Spacecraft Among 21 Tech Projects NASA Selects for Reduced-Gravity Flight Testing
18 May 09 NASA has selected the Flux-Pinned Spacecraft project for microgravity flight testing under the Facilitated Access to the Space Environment for Technology Development and Training (FAST) program.
Dr. Mason Peck to speak in the NYS Space Series at MOST
16 Apr 09 Mason Peck, professor of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering from Cornell University will speak on Exploring the Solar System with Penny-Sized Spacecraft as part of the NYS Space Series at the Milton J. Rubenstein Museum of Science & Technology in Syracuse, NY.


New Scientist: Gyroscopic space robot avoids negative reactions
7 Aug 08 Researchers at the Space System Design Studio at Cornell University, New York, have successfully tested a prototype on a microgravity "vomit comet" flight that simulates a space environment.
Discovery News: Tiny Space Engine Powered by Earth's Magnetic Field
5 Jun 08 An experimental satellite propulsion system that uses the Earth's magnetic field instead of chemical propellants could make satellite missions more affordable.


Popular Science: Mmmm, Space Chips
6 Aug 07 The next generation of robotic space explorers could be smaller than a dime–and cost about that much, too. Mason Peck, an engineer at Cornell University, envisions thousands of miniature spacecraft drifting to different planets, powered only by Earth's magnetic field.
New Scientist: Spacecraft may surf the solar system on magnetic fields
13 Mar 07 Future spacecraft may surf the magnetic fields of Earth and other planets, taking previously unfeasible routes around the solar system, according to a proposal funded by NASA's Institute for Advanced Concepts.
Space Travel: Cornell To Study Planetary Magnetic Fields Propulsion Research Under NASA Grant
28 Feb 07 Dr. Mason Peck from the Cornell University College of Engineering received a NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Phase I $75,000 award to study an innovative idea for altering spacecraft orbits in future missions.


Air and Space: Starship on a Chip
1 Nov 06 Mason Peck, an assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at Cornell University, ... would harness the Lorentz forces that drive charged particles in magnetic fields, and which physicists use to whip bits of atoms to hellacious speeds in giant particle accelerators on Earth.
Press Release: Planetary Magnetic Fields Can Propel Future Spacecraft Missions?
20 Oct 06 Dr. Mason Peck from the Cornell University College of Engineering received a NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Phase I $75,000 award to study an innovative idea for altering spacecraft orbits in future missions.


Professor Mason Peck to address AIAA 3rd Region 1 Conference November 5
23 Sep 05 Professor Mason Peck has been invited to address the 3rd AIAA Region 1 Conference. He will speak about Cornell’s CUSat nanosatellite project, a two–year effort to design build and launch a pair of in-orbit inspection satellites.
Peck Receives Grant from NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts
8 Jul 05 Professor Mason Peck has received one of the small number of grants awarded this year by NIAC for revolutionary aeronautics and space concepts that could dramatically impact how NASA develops and conducts its missions.


Cornell MAE Welcomes New Faculty
1 Aug 04 MAE welcomes Brian Kirby and Mason Peck to the department.