Cubes are orbiting the Earth.
Measuring ten-centimeters on a side,
each roughly the size of a large
coffee mug --
are designed to be inexpensive both to build and to launch.
Pictured above, three CubeSats were released from the
International Space Station
(ISS) last November by the arm of the
Kibo Laboratory module.
CubeSats are frequently created by students as part of university science or
engineering projects and include missions such as collecting
wide angle imagery of the Earth,
testing orbital radio communications, monitoring the
Earth's magnetic field, and
exploring the Earth's
Depending on the exact height of their release,
CubeSats will re-enter the
on the time scale of months to years.
Expedition 38 Crew,