The belief that the design and development of cubesats involves a lot of engineering talent isn’t completely false. However, it isn’t completely true either. The reason for this is that cubesat development is a very lengthy project, especially for universities, and it requires some background in management. The need for a project manager is crucial to the project, and would be greatly enhanced if the person who filled the position had an engineering background as well as an MBA / engineering management degree.The cubesat project is divided into various subsystems of the satellite which include On-board data handling (OBDH), the Power subsystem, Communication subsystem, Attitude Control subsystem and of course payload. Each subsystem team is led by a specialist in the field. None of the subsystem teams can work completely independent of each other, which is why a system engineer is needed to organize the teams and keep the project running effectively. The system engineer will need to have the technical knowledge of each subsystem to ensure the teams ability to work together seamlessly with the knowledge of what is expected of them.
The project manager and system engineer will need to work together to develop timelines for each team. These timelines will then be fine tuned during discussions with the team leaders. Project managers are also in charge of the non-technical issues as well as the coordination with ITU and the launch providers.
Equally important to the cubesat development is a team of technicians. It isn’t feasible for every team to have their own technician, which is why it makes more sense for there to be a team of technicians that assist all the teams when needed. The technicians should have knowledge of soldering, PCB printing and posses great workshop skills.The development of a cubesat requires all of this manpower.