Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Clay M. Koschnick, PhD


AFITs Center for Space Research and Assurance (CSRA) has developed several small satellites without a detailed developmental framework in place but future work will focus on CubeSat development with the intent of managing multiple builds concurrently. With the goal of each satellite being completed in three years, a comprehensive process needs to be established. Research revealed that the Department of Defense (DoD), U.S. Air Force (USAF), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) guidance on the acquisition and systems engineering processes require more reviews and deliverables than appropriate for CSRAs projects. The development processes from other universities divulge some aspects of the much larger DoD or NASA processes were borrowed and incorporated. All these processes were explored and tailored to meet the specific needs of CSRA. To effectively scrutinize each process, the frameworks were divided into life-cycles, deliverables, and entrance/exit criteria before being tailored. The research provided qualitative data so visual mapping was used to compare and tailor the life-cycles. The deliverables were recorded and organized to develop a comprehensive list that was tailored to those that are value-added to CubeSat development. Once the appropriate entrance/exit criteria were applied to the life-cycle and deliverables, a fully tailored framework was defined.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number