Inflatable antenna for CubeSats: Development of the X-band prototype

Alessandra Babuscia, Thomas Choi, Jonathan Sauder, Aman Chandra, Jekan Thangavelautham

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

19 Scopus citations


CubeSats1 and small satellites have potential to provide means to explore space and to perform science in a more affordable way. As the goals for these spacecraft become more ambitious in space exploration, moving from Low Earth Orbit (LEO) to Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) or further, the communication systems currently implemented will need to be improved to support those missions. One of the bottlenecks is the antennas' size, due to the close relation between antenna gain and dimensions. Hence, a possible solution is to develop inflatable antennas which can be packaged efficiently, occupying a small amount of space, and they can provide, once deployed, large dish dimension and correspondent gain. A prototype of a 1 m inflatable antenna for X-Band has been developed in a joint effort between JPL and ASU. This paper will detail the principle challenges in developing the antenna technology focusing on: design, EM analysis, fabrication and tests.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2016 IEEE Aerospace Conference, AERO 2016
PublisherIEEE Computer Society
ISBN (Electronic)9781467376761
StatePublished - Jun 27 2016
Externally publishedYes
Event2016 IEEE Aerospace Conference, AERO 2016 - Big Sky, United States
Duration: Mar 5 2016Mar 12 2016

Publication series

NameIEEE Aerospace Conference Proceedings
ISSN (Print)1095-323X


Other2016 IEEE Aerospace Conference, AERO 2016
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityBig Sky

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Space and Planetary Science


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