The 6th Mission Idea Contest

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Introduction to the Mission Idea Contest

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The Mission Idea Contest (MIC) was established in 2010 to provide aerospace engineers, college students, consultants, and anybody interested in space with opportunities to present their creative ideas and gain attention internationally. The primary goal of MICs is to open a door to a new facet of space exploration and exploitation.

Development of micro/nano-satellites started as an educational and research program primarily at university laboratories. As the micro/nano-satellite technology matures, it has spread rapidly across the academics and industry for practical application.

Live Streaming

The final presentation will be held in Tokyo on November 13 (9:00 am - 5:00 pm (JST)) and will be broadcast here. (Live streaming URL:
The program can be found here.


Hermes CubeSat: on-site data gathering for accurate mapping of the Main Asteroid Belt. Marti Pujol Gasulla, Arnold Hellin, Teo Lenormand, Paul Michel Kyushu Institute of Technology Japan
MINERVA: A 6U Nanosatellite with an Autonomous Intelligent Biological Operating System (AIBO) for Deep-Space Experiment Sumeth Klomchitcharoen Mahidol University Thailand
Mission ACE: Apophis Close Encounter Ying Liao National Central University Taiwan
PARS: Precursor Asteroid Remote Survey Batu Candan, Cansu Yildirim, Derya Sarmisak, Mehmet Esit, Sahin Ulas Koprucu, Sefa Cengiz, Semra Sultan Uzun, Sirin Yakupoglu Middle East Technical University Turkey
Disrupting Herpes virus investigation in lunar orbit: A system for animal cells analysis Kevin Andrey Sanchez Ramirez Universidad de Costa Rica and Instituto Tecnologico de Costa Rica Costa Rica
Observation of Telomere Length Changes in Deep Space Radiation Environment Jose Leonardo Brenes, David Limpus, Dayanna Vargas, Maria Fernanda Guerrero, Marlon Narvaez Vanderbilt University, Universidad de Costa Rica, Universidad Autónoma de Centroamérica USA, Costa Rica, Nicaragua
SCORE: Observation and Exploration of a Long Period Comet using Micro-Satellites Vincenzo Porrino University of Naples Federico II Italy
ILNSS : Network for position on Lunar surface and interplanetary prototype Thanapat Chotipun Bodindecha (Sing Singhaseni) School Thailand
Melchior - Microsatellite Explorer to a Long-period Comet in a Heliocentric Inner Orbit Luigi Falanga University of Naples Federico II Italy
The Hilda Observer Test (THOT) mission Cristian Chavez University of Southern Queensland Australia
LWISAT: Lunar Water Index Satellite Constellation Karina Obando, Hector Gomez, Eduardo Leandro, Karolina Herrera, Sofia Alvarado, Antony Ramirez, Kimberly Leon Universidad de Costa Rica and Instituto Tecnologico de Costa Rica, Universidad Invenio, Universidad del Valle de Guatemala, Indian Hills Community Collage Costa Rica and Guatemala


Since the publication of Tsiolkovsky's rocket equation in 1903, and the genesis of modern rocketry ushered by Goddard's experiments with liquid-propellant rockets; humanity has achieved remarkable feats of space research and exploration that were once only dreams.
Advancements in technology, coalesced with our curiosity of the unknown and our tenacious spirit in overcoming challenges; space capability, missions, and applications have progressively become more sophisticated, extending our capabilities in the field of deep-space exploration. Considerations such as the implementation of the Gateway project and unprecedented levels of advancement in technical proficiency, will contribute to the frequency and ease at which deep-space missions can be undertaken.

To achieve mission objectives, deep space missions require the development of mission specific components from the base up. Often with long-term mission objectives in mind, deep space missions encourage us to challenge our own limitations and deepen our understanding; facilitating continuous learning and inspiring our imaginations to create real-world space applications. The 7th Mission Idea Contest on Deep Space Science and Exploration with Micro/nanosatellites seeks to build the technical knowledge and skills, including mission design and scientific writing skills, required to deliver opportunities for the development of practical deep-space missions that is not dominated by developed nations through the identification of the required technology and innovation to achieve deep-space exploration projects with micro/nanosatellites.

The 7th Mission Idea Contest for Deep Space Science and Exploration with Nano/Micro Satellite will be held as follows:


October 23, 2020Restart announcement
February 15- March 19Virtual Lectures
July 7, 2021 July 21, 2021Deadline of Abstract submission
August 18, 2021Notification of Finalists
September 30, 2021Deadline of Final Paper submission
November 13, 2021Final presentation (the location is to be determined.)


Please propose an innovative mission idea which contributes to deep space science and exploration.

Abstract template
Abstract template
Full paper template
Full paper template


The final presentation will be held at X-NIHONBASHI Tower, Tokyo, Japan.
(Note: Due to the pandemic, it will be organized in a hybrid way.)


  1. Deep Space Communications and Navigation Series, Jon Hamkins, Editor-in-Chief, JPL
  2. Deep Space Telecommunications Systems Engineering, Joseph H. Yuen, Editor, JPL
  3. Deep Space Communications, Jim Taylor, Editor, JPL
  4. Introduction to the 7th Mission Idea Contest (MIC7) - Deep Space Mission, NAKASUKA Shinichi, the University of Tokyo
  5. Mission Design for Deep Space Nano/Micro Spacecraft Utilizing Lunar Orbital Platform-Gateway Opportunities, OZAKI Naoya, JAXA/ISAS
  6. COPUOS-STSC2021 technical presentation
    Movie (YouTube Link)


Institute for Open Innovation, the University of Tokyo
The Collaborative Research Organization for Space Science and Technology, the University of Tokyo
International Academy of Astronautics
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