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You have found our cansat homepage which describe our cansat shield which can be yours for fun.

  • CANSAT is a cheap and efficient way to combine engineering, math, physics, space and FUN in learning.

  • It has now for a decade been part of undergraduate and high school activitites in Europe as well in USA.

  • At Studentspace at Aalborg University we have build and launched real cubesats up in orbit since 2003.

the image is from the European ESA competition at Andøya Rocker Range June 2014 - The picture shows one of the
cansats without the covering can with a hard working student

What is a cansat ?


A cansat is not a satellite in traditional sense but a small flying vehicle which which fits into a standard 330 ml can.

can + 'satellite’ == cansat

You can launch it with a rocket up to 1-3 km og of height or use a helium ballon.
On the image you can see Danishh Space Challenge cansat rocket which nicely delivers the cansats up in space.


Aalborg University - AAU studentspace offers a cansat shield for cansat competitions
or just for fun :-) It's an Arduino shield which fits on an Uno.

See also wikipedia about cansats and EU cansat page

On the image you see cansat shield version 4 which support i2c based sensors. On the shield is the GY-80 IMU.
The shield does also support GY-87 board. There is also NTC based temperature measurement.


On the image you see cansat shield version 3 which support analog sensors like MPX4115 for pressure
and mma7361l 3 axis accelerometer as well as NTC for temperature.


We have our own launcher(cansat cannon) based on a cheap compressor and a high pressure steel tube.
We do emphasize that it puts a lot of stress (acceleration) on your cansat.

You can also find helium based ballons for more smooth launches.

a real shooting

We (Jens and Simon) has developed the AAU shield with the following in mind

  • Arduino as computerplatform (Uno)

  • Cheap

  • Open source - you can get production files for the shield. Cheap China manufactoring can get shield down to €1/pcs.

  • And of course simple - we do like KISS principle

and of course it fits into a 330ml can.


A cansat setup

A small setup with an Arduino Mega (1280/2560), DY-80sensor board and Fasttrax up-501 GPS has been setup


Seen from top. from lefto to right: openlog, dy-80 sensor board, up-501 gps

Missing APC-220 radio on top

The top green shield is our normal cansat shield vrs 2 now with mpx4115 etc and instead the DY-80 board.
The DY-80 which is 10 DOF (degr of freedom): adxl 345 , l3g4200 hmx5883l all i2c interfaced
and gives you 3 axis acc, gyro, magnetometer and pressesure and temperature

More pictures here

Aalborg Katedralskole will fly this on a Danish Space Challenge rocket 30. may 2014 at Nymindegab for 3.5km or 7km

Best wishes from here

You can find code in the sketches section here

If you have nosiy signals filtering may be an idea. See filter


Real time Kernels

I have written a preemptive kernel for Arduino - SNOT - and have also FreeRTOS

See kernels for more info and src

REMEMBER : all is free and under the beer license. Feel free to use and if you do send me an email.

Everything is as it is including all possible errors in the code. So yo are on your own.

SNOT is tested a lot so I hope (but cant and will not promise) it should be reasonable error free


External doxumentation and litterature

See http://arduino.cc homepage for Arduino

Some tutorials:

Se under litt


more to come