E-st@r-II before launch.jpg
The Polytechnic University of Turin CubeSat
Mission typeTechnology demonstration
OperatorPolitecnico di Torino
COSPAR ID2012-006C Edit this at Wikidata
SATCAT no.38079
Mission duration4 years (planned)
Spacecraft properties
Spacecraft typeCubeSat
ManufacturerPolitecnico di Torino
Launch mass1 kg (2.2 lb)
Start of mission
Launch date13 February 2012, 10:00:00 UTC[1]
RocketVega (VV01)
Launch siteKourou, ELV
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric orbit[2]
RegimeLow Earth orbit
Perigee altitude302 km (188 mi)
Apogee altitude1,082 km (672 mi)
Period98.47 minutes

e-st@r (Educational Satellite @ Politecnico di Torino) is a miniaturised satellite built by the Politecnico di Torino.[3] It is a 1U CubeSat design with a 10 cm side and a mass not exceeding 1.33 kg.

Launch and deployment

In 2006 the Polytechnic University of Turin had tried to put one of its satellites into orbit (PiCPoT), but the Dnepr launcher used exploded a few seconds after the start and destroyed itself.

In 2009 the European Space Agency in view of the inaugural launch of Vega (which being the first launch had a high probability of failure) offered 9 seats on the carrier for the same number of cubesats, plus another two seats for larger satellites. Only 7 of the cubesats managed to be prepared in time for launch:

They were launched into low Earth Orbit on the maiden flight of Arianespace's Vega rocket on 13 February 2012 on a multi-payload mission shared with LARES of the Italian Space Agency and ALMASat-1 of the University of Bologna.

The satellite was successfully deployed into orbit, and the signal was received by the team's ground station and by amateur radio operators.[4] However, operations have been impeded by unexpected tumbling, and the satellite was put into safe mode.[5]

The communication system uses a processor PIC and communicates with the ground at a frequency of 437.445 MHz with a power of 0.5 W. The frequencies have been assigned to cubesats by ESA.

A total of about 50,000 euros was spent on the design and construction of the satellite.

The orbit is inclined 71° and is slightly elliptical. It also crosses the van Allen belts.

The satellite was created by the CubeSatTeam of the Polytechnic of Turin, responsible for creating picosatellites.[6]


  1. ^ McDowell, Jonathan. "Launch Log". Jonathan's Space Report. Retrieved 31 October 2013.
  2. ^ "Display: E-STAR 2012-006C". N2YO.com. 31 October 2013. Retrieved 31 October 2013.
  3. ^ Sabrina Corpino, Nicole Viola, Fabrizio Stesina, and Sergio Chiesa, "Design and development of the e-st@r CubeSat", Paper IAC-09.B4.6B.3, 2009 International Astronautical Congress (accessed 16 August 2013)
  4. ^ E-ST@R successfully launched (accessed 16 August 2013)
  5. ^ eoPortal Directory, E-ST@R (Educational SaTellite @ politecnico di toRino) (accessed 16 August 2013)
  6. ^ Stesina, Fabrizio; Corpino, Sabrina (30 April 2020). "In Orbit Operations of an Educational Cubesat: the e-st@r-II Experience". International Review of Aerospace Engineering (IREASE). 13 (2): 40–50. doi:10.15866/irease.v13i2.18317. ISSN 2533-2279.