Kick-off for a new power system for small satellites

Delft, 25 February 2020

Province of South Holland awards grant to Consortium of three Dutch companies

Three Dutch companies based in the province of South Holland are proud to announce their collaboration: The consortium, consisting of Hyperion Technologies, GTM Advanced Structures and Tective BV, scored first place among 31 winning subsidy applications. Starting in February 2020, the consortium will take on an 18-month journey to develop a highly modular and scalable power system for small satellites. By winning the province’s MIT Research & Development subsidy worth over €130K, the CubeSat Advanced Power System (CAPS) will soon be reality.

More power to small satellites

Small satellites, like CubeSats and Nanosats, have come a long way to earn their respect within the scientific and commercial community. Today, many miniaturized high-performance systems and payloads exist to deliver reliable and high-quality data products., for example through making use of constellations and distributed risks. Integrated power systems for these kinds of small satellites are already available.

However, the NewSpace market is getting mature: With launch cost steadily dropping, “small” satellites can afford to grow in size, allowing for more complex payloads – not least of all because the global market is showing a growing user base for more, new or innovative space-based data products. Standardized and commercial off-the-shelf components for these sizes of satellites are however still a rarity.

CAPS aims to target this growing niche of “larger” small satellites to facilitate their increased power demands. The result will consist of a high-power end-to-end power solution for demanding payloads. A unified system architecture will allow for modular implementations of solar panels, power storage and power distribution in a variety of larger CubeSat sizes. Ultimately, the solution will be made tailorable for individual client needs whilst retaining a favorable price.

CAPS

Image, from left to right: Mattijs Otten & Jeffrey Miog, Founding team of Tective, Bert Monna, CEO of Hyperion Technologies and Jochem Frudiger, Managing Director of GTM – Copyright: Hyperion Technologies

Evolving space technology in the Netherlands

Hyperion Technologies has been steadily expanding its product portfolio. With the development of CAPS, the company expects to be able to offer an even broader range of products for small satellites within the next two years. This will allow the company to act as a one-stop-shop, being able to supply everything needed to facilitate satellite systems for demanding CubeSat payloads. CEO Bert Monna is clear in his vision of CAPS:

“We aim to offer clients a plug and play experience. The different components of CAPS will allow us to tune the system specifically to match the client’s mission profile.”

GTM, with its experience in supplying advanced structures and solar panels to the space industry, will pioneer high efficiency solar panels for CubeSats within this project. By implementing novel ways to deploy and steer solar panels, energy output will be maximized in ways new to the CubeSat industry.

Using space tech for terrestrial robotics

Meanwhile, Tective sees opportunities to transfer new battery and charging technology into robotics. CEO and Founder Mattijs Otten said:

“We aim to capitalize on innovations within the CAPS project to facilitate fully autonomous robotics. In order for robots to truly start playing a significant role in remote areas, on-board power supply is critical. CAPS has all the components to start integrating solar panels and autonomous charging systems into robots aimed for exploration, surveillance and emergency response.”

The CAPS team would like to extend special thanks to the province of Zuid-Holland for their enthusiasm and subsequent first place. The team is exited to start development, and will update about its progress frequently. Be sure to stay tuned.

About Hyperion Technologies

Hyperion Technologies is an independent Dutch space company located in Delft, Netherlands. Having been active since 2013, it specialises in the development of miniaturised, high-performance and smart components for small satellites as well as satellite platforms for complete missions. This includes both hardware and software. Hyperion follows the philosophy to provide the best-in-class products to its clients worldwide, scratching at the limits of the physically possible within the scope of miniaturisation.

About GTM

GTM Advanced Structures is a company located in The Hague, assisting aerospace companies in the development and realization of advanced aerospace structures. GTMs specialises in manufacturing of hybrid parts (bonded, FML and composite) and provision of complete R&D support covering material development, testing & inspection up to the manufacturing of the final prototype.

About Tective

Tective BV is a creative engineering firm founded in 2019. Having a background in swarm robotics, its team has a wide range of experience in turning concepts into tangible prototypes and small series production. Its areas of expertise include mobile robotics, sensing/IoT and integrated product design.