TechEdSat-13 Satellite

Satellite TechEdSat-13 (TES-13)
Type CubeSat
Units or mass 3U
Status Operational (Presentations at CDW2022, CDW2023 and SmallSat 2023)
Launched 2022-01-13
NORAD ID 51095
Deployer NLAS Mk. II [Tyvak]
Launcher LauncherOne
Entity name NASA Ames Research Center
Institution Space agency
Entity type Government (Civil / Military)
Nation US
Launch brokerer NASA CSLI / ELaNa

Test several technologies intended to help better track and identify CubeSats.


Latest in a series of NASA student-intern built spacecraft, will be used to test several technologies intended to help better track and identify CubeSats and other small spacecraft from the ground.

TechEdSat-13, from NASA’s Ames Research Center in California’s Silicon Valley, is a 3U nanosatellite that carries a unique artificial intelligence/machine learning (AI/ML) module featuring the first orbital flight of a neuromorphic processor. This processor, the Intel Loihi, permits fast and efficient execution of AI/ML algorithms through a unique architecture that, in some ways, mimics the human brain.

In addition, there is a unique exo-atmospheric brake that will help rapidly de-orbit this and future nanosatellites. With this exo-brake technology, TechEdSat-13 will help address the accumulation and efficient disposal of orbital debris. This effort also helps to set the stage for autonomous navigation for nanosatellites to drop from orbit and reach their planned destination on Earth.


Mission is ongoing and active as of Spring 2023 at 468km, decaying at 162 m/day.

Overall, the Loihi-1 neuromorphic processor has performed well on board TechEdSat-13 and has achieved comprehensive success per the initial mission criteria. It should be noted this experiment is ongoing, with TES-13 still active and on orbit as of August 2023, with testing now focused on extended experimental runs during the solar events occurring over the summer of 2023. As of this writing, no significant SEE events have been noted, even with this complex-architecture COTS 14nm processor only protected by two millimeters of aluminum. Summary packets stating pass/fail results and top-level system health logs have been received via Iridium SBD, and full BrainStack execution log files have been received through now successful Lunar Radio S-Band downlink opportunities

Sources [1] [2] [3]
Photo sources [1] [2] [3]
Keywords License Plate Identification Tag, Tracking Enhancement Device

Last modified: 2024-05-29

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Created by Erik Kulu


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