Cubesats, the small, cheap spacecraft popular with engineering students due to their hands-on appeal as teaching tools, are attracting attention beyond the academy as their capabilities grow and launch opportunities proliferate. “It really is a technology; it’s not simply a cheap platform,” says Mason Peck, director of the Space Systems Design Studio at Cornell University. “There’s a lot more going on than that.” Peck has been selected to be NASA’s chief technologist in January, and ...

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