Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE)

Document Type

Master's Thesis




Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. James Lumpp


Small satellites and CubeSats have established themselves within the aerospace community because of their low cost and high return on investment. Many CubeSats are developed in a short time frame and often leverage commercial off the shelf components for quick turnaround missions. With regard to the Electrical Power System, commercially available products typically use a centralized architecture. However, a centralized architecture is not reusable, since missions that require additional solar arrays or batteries would necessitate a redesign of the power system. With the range of CubeSat sizes and mission goals, it is obvious that a one-size-fits-all solution is not appropriate. This thesis details a reusable and scalable power system architecture applicable to a variety of missions. Reusability is achieved by using common building blocks or "modules," where the same modules can be used between missions. Scalability is achieved by not limiting the number of modules that can be connected together—more modules can be added as needed. In this system, solar arrays and battery units connect directly to a common bus, supplying an unregulated voltage to each subsystem. These subsystems then regulate the bus voltage to their individual needs. The power system also features direct energy transfer and solar-only operation.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)