A Feasibility Study of Microsat Mission Architectures for Ring Science in the Uranian System

An Ya Olson, Amlan Sinha, Arjun Chhabra, Sarah Fry, Kristen Ahner, Ryne Beeson, Adarsh Rajguru

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


With an increase in focus on the exploration and characterization of the Ice Giants, there is a growing need to develop mission architectures to perform scientific operations in the Uranian system. Science goals have been outlined by NASA in their Ice Giants Pre-Decadal Mission Study Report, but science priority and mission design are made difficult by the lack of knowledge of the Ice Giant systems. A primary architecture for conducting scientific exploration of Uranus has previously been identified as an orbiter with an atmospheric probe. In this paper, we explore the feasibility of a supplemental microsat-class spacecraft to this architecture, which would allow greater flexibility in achieving secondary science objectives with low risk and cost. We focus primarily on mission requirements for key ring science goals, leading to trajectory design guidelines and mission constraints necessary for characterizing the structure, dynamics, and composition of rings in the Uranian system. Broader compliance with the primary orbiter and probe architecture are studied, and guidance on instrumentation and subsystem-level requirements are detailed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAIAA SciTech Forum and Exposition, 2024
PublisherAmerican Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Inc, AIAA
ISBN (Print)9781624107115
StatePublished - 2024
EventAIAA SciTech Forum and Exposition, 2024 - Orlando, United States
Duration: Jan 8 2024Jan 12 2024

Publication series

NameAIAA SciTech Forum and Exposition, 2024


ConferenceAIAA SciTech Forum and Exposition, 2024
Country/TerritoryUnited States

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Aerospace Engineering


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