Unicorn-2 Platform

Version 2 of The UNICORN PLATFORM - Doing More with Less

In partnership with the European Space Agency (ESA), Alba Orbital is developing an advanced 3p PocketQube platform called Unicorn-2. The goal of the platform is to get 3U cubesat performance on a PocketQube. We expect to save satellite operators over 50% between Unicorn-2 and a standard 3U cubesat for Hardware and Launch.

If you are interested in using the Unicorn-2 platform for your mission, please get in touch: contact@pocketqubeshop.com

Innovations And Features


 Payload volume

One of our key insights from Unicorn-1 is that pico-satellites should be integrated instead of modular. There are 7 billion smartphones globally and all manufacturers have chosen integration as a design philosophy. Unicorn's key subsystems, EPS, OBC and ADCS are all integrated into one PCB. This allows the majority of the inside volume of the satellite to be used for the valuable thing.. payload!

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No longer Power Constrained

Unicorn-2 boasts the worlds first Pico or Nano-satellite Quadruple deployable solar panel. This creates in-excess of 17 watts peak power, with standard missions generating 5 watts on orbit average. Payloads have upto 4 watts available per orbit via a 12v line rated for upto 2 amps. Our nominal configuration has 14.8 watts of storage available via two Lithium-Ion batteries, mounted externally to increase payload volume.

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Active Pointing

Alba Orbital have designed and integrated the worlds first Attitude Determination and Control System for a PocketQube class satellite. This allows worst case point accuracy of 5 degrees. The platform is equipped with two 2 axis sunsensors, 4 Light Dependent Resistors, 3 brushless motors with reaction wheels and 3 axis magnetometer and magnetorquers.

UNICORN-2 Optical

Suits all missions

We have designed Unicorn-2 to accommodate all types of payloads. Our nominal payload is an optical payload, we are planning to fly in early 2018. This payload has 22m gsd from a 500km orbit (better gsd than landsat). Other viable missions include ADS-B, AIS, Connecting Internet Of Things (IOT), GNSS-R, In Orbit Demostration/Validation (IOD/IOV) etc.

Design Reviewed

Unicorn-2 has been supported by the European Space Agency (ESA). ESA will and are reviewing our design and documentation multiple times throughout our development phase to ensure high quality throughout our processes.


Getting it launched

Unicorn-2 complies with the PocketQube MR-FOD standard interface. Alba Orbital have been developing both a 6p and a 96p deployer to release this platform and others into orbit.

Suits all budgets

Unicorn-2 starts from 199k euro, with launch from 60k euro. This is approximately 50% the cost of a similar 3u cubesat mission with launch.

If you would like to know more or reserve your platform, email: contact@pocketqubeshop.com