Name Maya-6
Type CubeSat
Units or mass 1U
Organisation STeP UP University of the Philippines
Institution University
Entity Academic / Education
Nation Philippines
Operator In-house?
Partners University of the Philippines Diliman, Kyushu Institute of Technology

Philippines second set of nanosatellites developed in-country, with an aim to slowly transition to completely developing the nanosatellites locally.


It is a 1U Cubesat developed under the STEP-UP Project with the following missions:

  1. APRS digipeater

  2. Store-and-Forward

  3. Hentenna mission (Maya-5)

  4. Camera mission

  5. On-board Image classification

    The primary mission of Maya-5 and Maya-6 CubeSats is to provide digital message relay service to the amateur radio community by means of an APRS (Automatic Packet Reporting System) digipeater onboard. The APRS digipeater onboard the CubeSats will use 145.825 MHz for both receive and transmit. Digipeater’s 145.825 MHz is a standard commercially available frequency used by other satellites such as ARISS and LAPAN-A2.

Another mission of Maya-5 is to demonstrate a data/message store-and-forward (S&F) system in line with the Universal Amateur Radio Text and E-mail messaging. In this mission, our aim is to investigate technical challenges through experiments on appropriate data format, multiple access scheme, file-handling protocol while complying with limited operational time and power constraints using the APRS protocol. The transceiver shall implement the traditional APRS using FM/AFSK. These APRS data/messages will be received by our GS network and we will send it to the APRS-IS(Automatic Packet Reporting System, Internet Service) network on the internet.

Demonstration of Loop Antenna design using CubeSat structure. Attitude Determination and Control System (ADCS), which is the primary source of attitude information of the satellite. Hentenna (HNT), which is an experimental communication system that uses the satellite structure as an antenna.

The CubeSat will also carry a Commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) camera which will take images of the participating countries from space for promotional and educational awareness of the project and to provide tangible proof of operation in space. Measurements and image data will be shared with the public on the project website.

The Image Classification Unit (ICU) will examine the images and classify them into predefined categories: Earth and Non-Earth. The output label will be attached to the image as metadata which will be downlinked alongside the image data. The ICU classifies the image based on its content using DSP and machine learning algorithms. Moreover, Maya-5 will expand amateur radio communication experiment on the operation of CubeSat constellation via a network of UHF/VHF amateur radio ground stations (started in BIRDS-1 CubeSat constellation project). 

Maya-6 has experimental on-board computer (OBC-EX), an original development of the STeP-UP project. The goal of the OBC-EX is to become a foundation for future CubeSats, which will have an integrated system that can act as a secondary on-board computer, determine and control the satellite’s attitude, and use the satellite’s structure as a communication system to the ground station.

Sources [1] [2]
Photo sources [1] [2]

Related Spacecraft

Name Status Launch Orbit
Maya-5 not launched 2023-12-30 400 km, 51.6 deg, ISS
Maya-6 not launched 2023-12-30 400 km, 51.6 deg, ISS

Last modified: 2023-06-09
Detailed Maya-6 entry in the Database
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