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A PocketQube is a type of miniaturized satellite for space research that usually has a size of 5 cm cubed, has a mass of no more than 180 grams, and typically uses commercial off-the-shelf components for its electronics.

Beginning in 2009,[1] Morehead State University (MSU) and Kentucky Space developed the PocketQube specifications to help universities worldwide to perform space science and exploration. While the bulk of development comes from academia, several companies build PocketQube, such as Stadako and PocketQube Shop. PocketQube projects have even been the subject of Kickstarter campaigns.[2][3][4] The PocketQube format is also popular with amateur radio satellite builders.[5]


The PocketQube specification accomplishes several high-level goals. Simplification makes it possible to design and produce a workable satellite at low cost. Encapsulation of the launcher-payload interface takes away the prohibitive amount of managerial work that would previously be required for mating a piggyback satellite with its launcher. Unification among payloads and launchers enables quick exchanges of payloads and utilization of launch opportunities on short notice. PocketQube is similar to Cubesat in this regard.

The standard was first proposed by Professor Bob Twiggs of (Morehead State University) and the intention was for a satellite which could fit in your pocket, hence the name PocketQube.

PocketQube Shop Satellite


First proposed in 2009 as a solution to the increasing costs of Cubesat launches to Low Earth Orbit, the first 4 PocketQube Satellites were launched on the 21st of November 2013 onboard their mothership Unisat-5. The next expected launch will be on UniSat-6. The largest so far is a 3P PocketQube called T-Logoqube[6]

Launched PocketQubes[edit]

Name Type Organisation Mission Launch Date (UTC) Rocket COSPAR ID Status Decay date Remarks
T-LogoQube (Beakersat-1, MagPocketQube, Eagle-1) 2.5P Morehead State University, Sonoma State University Teaching Tool 2013-11-21, 07:11 Dnepr-1 TBC Active
$50Sat (Eagle-1) 1.5p Amateur Group TBC 2013-11-21, 07:11 Dnepr-1 TBC Active[7] Team Interview
QubeScout-S1 2.5p University of Maryland, Baltimore County TBC 2013-11-21, 07:11 Dnepr-1 TBC Active[8]
WREN 1p Stadoko UG Tech demo, Camera SSTV, 3 Axis Reaction Wheel and pp Thrusters 2013-11-21, 07:11 Dnepr-1 TBC Beacon operational Team Interview

Future PocketQubes[edit]

Name Type Organisation Mission Launch Date (UTC) Rocket COSPAR ID Status Decay date Remarks
SASSat 1P High School Student, Singapore American School TBC TBC TBC TBC In Development TBC
OzQube-1 1P Amateur Group Earth Observation TBC TBC TBC In Development Team Interview
Arduiqube 1P Amateur Group TBC TBC TBC TBC N/A Team Interview


CHIPSTAR (TRSI) 2p Paul Kocyla (Germany), Jo Hinchliffe (UK) PCB sats deployment TBC TBC TBC In Development [1]
UbaTubaSat TBC Secondary School, Brazil TBC TBC TBC TBC N/A
SMOG-1 1p Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Hungary Measurement of the radio spectrum in the UHF TV band TBC TBC TBC In development
ArduOrbiter-1 1p Amateur Group TBC TBC TBC TBC N/A http://www.arduorbiter.com/
SunewnewSat 1p Amateur Group TBC TBC TBC TBC N/A Team Interview
Discovery 1a 1p Photos To Space Camera / Photo Sat TBC TBC TBC In Development TBC Company Website
EARS-PocketQube 1p Surrey EARS TBC TBC TBC TBC In Development TBC EARS-PocketQube
Lokahi 1p University of Hawaii TBC TBC TBC TBC In Development T

PocketQube vs PocketQub[edit]

The PocketQube standard originally started as 'PocketQub'.[9] This was changed in 2012 by Professor Bob Twiggs (Morehead State University). The standard is now referred to as PocketQube.


  1. ^ Twiggs, Bob. "Making it small" (PDF). Retrieved 7 September 2013. 
  2. ^ "Kickstarter". Retrieved 1 October 2013. 
  3. ^ "Kickstarter, Wired UK". Retrieved 22 September 2013. 
  4. ^ 26th October 2013 "Kickstarter, Mail Online UK". 
  5. ^ "AMSAT UK". Retrieved 22 November 2013. 
  6. ^ Zack, Kevin, J. Garrett Jernigan, and Lynn Cominsky. "The Development of a 3P PocketQube.", Bulletin of the American Physical Society 58 (2013). Retrieved on 27 February 2014.
  7. ^ "50 Dollarsat Operational". Retrieved 22 November 2013. 
  8. ^ "QubeScout Press Release". Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  9. ^ "Standard". Retrieved 7 September 2013. 

External links[edit]