Mechanical structure for OreSat
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Mechanical structure for OreSat

This repo contains the top-level assembly of OreSat and the trivial subassemblies. If you'd like to contribute, drop in on the Google hangout (Fridays at 2 pm and Sundays at noon, pacific time), read the issues, and/or read the contributions guide.

The top-level assembly requires the reaction wheels repo be cloned into the same directory, e.g.:

 |-- reaction-wheels/
 |-- oresat-structure/


How to Select all COTS parts

  • Tools -> Component Selection -> Advanced Select...
  • Either:
    • Filter for document names which contain COTS. Name this selection and save it.
    • Import selectCOTS.xml
  • Apply the selection.
  • Edit -> Hide -> Current Display State
    This hides any components which come from the COTS/ directory (really anything with "COTS" in the name), which reduces lag significantly.
    If you want to show them again, use the same filter process, but show the current display state. If you want to show everything, you can just ctrl+a in the feature tree. If you're showing lots of COTS parts, please hide them before committing, since it can cause the model to load very slowly.

How to Use the OreSat Materials Database

  • Tools -> Options -> File Locations
  • Show folders for Material Databases.
  • Add the OreSat repo to the list.

You can easily extend and modify the database through the "Edit Material" menu. It's a plain XML file, so Git will track it as usual. Do not simply copy the database to the default folders! Other people won't be able to access the materials you add/change.


If you're looking for tasks to complete, check the issues or the meeting notes. This README is just too low-traffic to be useful as a TODO.

Repo Structure

  • OreSat.SLDASM
    The complete assembly of OreSat
  • Backplane
    The hub which provides power and data to all the boards
  • CardModules
    Parts/subassemblies for the cameras. (due for renaming)
  • COTS
    Any Commercial-Off-The-Shelf parts -- screws, connectors, et cetera.
  • doc
    Some of the seldom-changing references. (Refer to the Google drive instead when possible.)
  • Generic
    Parts/subassemblies for the generic card.
  • Hardware
    (deprecated) still holds some COTS parts which need to be moved and relinked
  • head-tail
    Cards that pass power and data to the endcap boads on the +/-Z faces.
  • Inhibit
    The card that turns off the satellite while in the peapod. (likely to become the battery card)
  • Keepout
    Solids for quickly checking if we conform to the CDS, by checking for interferences.
  • Rack
    The required CDS rails and the 'rack mount' panels -- the actual structure, per se
  • Solar
    _Solar panel boards
  • Zneg
    The feet of the unicorn: the turnstile antenna and its board.
  • Zpos
    The horn of the unicorn: the helical antenna and its board.


  • generic board: reference drawings of a genericised board. ECEs should use this as a reference when designing their boards.
  • backplane board: reference drawings of the backplane which connects the boards.
  • solar board: reference drawings of the board that the solar cells live on.


These are just some terms that are relevant to the structure, non-obvious to an MME, or non-standard.

  • The X and Z axes are aligned to the features described below, and the Y axis is oriented to obey the right hand rule. The axes of the top-level assembly follow this convention. This convention matches that of our launch provider.
  • A board is any PCB.
  • A card a board that slides into the rack structure of the satellite.
  • An endcap is a board that is screwed onto one of the +/-Z faces.
  • Rack and structure both refer to the assembly of aluminum frames to which all the boards mount.
  • The sides are the +/-Y components of the rack. They have the slots that the cards slide into.
  • The turnstile antenna is the four-pronged antenna on the -Z face of the satellite. It provides an omnidirectional, low-data-rate signal to the ground.
  • The helical or high gain antenna is the curly, single-pronged antenna on the +Z face of the satellite. It's the narrow-beam, high-data-rate antenna the satellite uses for transmitting video.
  • The backplane is the long board that sits on the -X face of the satellite. It transfers power, data, and RF between the boards.


Copyright Portland State Aerospace Society 2018.

This documentation describes Open Hardware and is licensed under the CERN OHL v. 1.2. You may redistribute and modify this documentation under the terms of the CERN OHL v.1.2. This documentation is distributed WITHOUT ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTY, INCLUDING OF MERCHANTABILITY, SATISFACTORY QUALITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. Please see the CERN OHL v.1.2 for applicable conditions.

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