Micromaps host Satellite Design Proposal

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2.2.4 Structure configuration

After all necessary structural analysis is performed to determine dimensions of the structure, the type of structural configuration is chosen. Typically, increasing thickness increases buckling strength of a structure. However, this directly conflicts with minimizing mass. A more effective way to strengthen and stiffen a bus structure is to use isogrid construction. Isogrid consists of machining a plate of material into a triangular pattern, as shown in Figure 5. This option is lighter than pure aluminum for smaller bus structures, with identical strength properties in all load directions. 15 Because isogrid is the proposed structure type, wall thickness must be increased to 3 mm to allow for ease in machining the isogrid, adequate web strength, and a skin thick enough to support solar cells.

Figure 5: Illustration of isogrid construction15

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