NASA Preparing Mini-Satellites To Send Into Space Powered By The Nexus One and Nexus S


The boys at NASA have been making headlines after hitting the sand dunes of Mars with their mini go-cart, Curiousity, and it looks like they have a few more surprises in store. A team from NASA’s Ames Research Center has been hard at work developing miniature satellites — called a “PhoneSat” — powered by, none other, than the OG Nexus One and Nexus S. NASA has spent the last few years putting these PhoneSats and the devices inside through the paces, testing them in a variety of situations, destroying a few prototypes in the process.

Currently, the team has 2 nanosatellite prototypes that will be sent up into space at different times. To see if something like this is even possible, the first will consist of a Nexus One, external batteries, external radio beacon, all inside a comfy 10x10x10cm shell. If the PhoneSat 1.0 is a success, the team will send up the PhoneSat 2.0 with the more powerful Nexus S inside and featuring a 2-way S-band radio, solar panels, and GPS receiver.

At $3,500 to build, NASA’s goal is to launch the “lowest-cost satellites ever flown into space,” and plans to send ’em on up later this year aboard the Orbital Sciences Corporation’s Antares rocket. With plans to send future PhoneSats to the moon, it shouldn’t be long before we see the Galaxy Nexus making an orbital space trip for itself, finally at home amongst the galaxies.


Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. I guess the government gonna find a much better and advance way 2 violate our 4th amendment by spying on us through sattelites thats made for specific phones(up 2 date)smh

    1. better go get your tin foil hat….

  2. I like the idea of making real robots with Android. However, they should look at Casio’s more rugged Android devices.

    1. They’ll send it in a shell, it doesn’t need to be tough but light.

  3. “Mini go-cart Curiosity”? It’s nuclear powered and the size of a mid-size car…

  4. What’s the point of having a satellite who’s battery dies after 4 hours?

    1. Are solar panels what you call batteries that last 4 hours?

  5. I would pass on this. $3,500 off contract for an out of date phone? Insane. We want a quad core with a 4.5″ screen…not a 10x10x10 cube with no screen and a 1 GZ processor.
    In other news, Apple sues NASA for patent infringement. Appple has alread patented space phones.

    1. Didn’t they INVENT space phones? (or was it outer space that they invented?)

      1. they invented the word invented. lawyers are on the case.

    2. Doesn’t Apple have the patent on 10X10X10 cubes?

    3. u stole my comment…my lawyer on way ,,,u betta backup

  6. What the hell a satellite needs a GPS receiver for? To navigate “Home”?

    On a positive note – can I have one of these added to “My Devices” list in the Market? I’d like to install a couple of LWPs on it.

  7. I wonder if they will even get into space, as Orbital Sciences have had 2 or 3 massively expensive failures recently…

  8. Trying to make space relevant and is not working.
    If NASA has the brightest scientist and engineers in America why can’t NASA figure out a way to sell something to make its own money and leave the American Taxpayer alone?
    Welfare NASA, sell a product, earn your own money.

    1. Problem is, and Im not going to get into a long discussion over this, if you say that about NASA, you pretty much need to say that about all government agencies. (that they should sell something and make their own money for operations)

    2. Gee, I bet you think you’re a genius. NASA has been one of the only government agencies out there worth funding. Many of the things we use today were influenced by NASA’s space technology.

    3. Yeah the US should spend money on building roads and highway jobs. Forget about actual middle income jobs and being a tech competitor and leader. Then sit back and wonder why 50% of college students end up getting jobs that only require a High School diploma.

      1. That comment gave me heartburn.

    4. nasa made the compact disc which we used forever and still use to this day dvd/bluray and fueled the need for microprocessors. the same ones in the phone/computer you used to type that.
      I used Irony, it was very effective.

  9. sooooo whats the number? i wanna call these phones and talk to the deepness of space!

  10. Lawrence, what irony are you speaking of?

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