Summer school/Workshop
"Microsatellites in planetary and atmospheric research"
Tartu, Estonia, 6 - 11 August 2018

Structure of the workshop/summer school
The programme will contain the following items:

  • Lectures about fields of research with potential applications for microsatellites as well as by space technicians about the technological state of the art of the field
  • Planning of research projects in space and planetary research by the participants in small groups: In this part the present scientists and technologists will be present as advisors to the participants. These projects will be devised by participants and attendees will be encouraged to suggest potential themes of the project in advance. This will allow organisers to develop the final programme together with participants in an interactive way.
  • a Guided tour of the communication facilities and the space technology labs of the Tartu Observatory in Tõravere (which constitute valuable infrastructure that can be of use for the planned projects). Also, an overview of potential funding possibilities for microsatellite missions will be presented during the summer school
  • Presentations of those projects by participants and discussions and feedback on them.
Participants will also have the possibility to display their own research results in a poster session.

The following people will give presentations at the summer course:

David Cullen, Cranfield University, UK
Wolf Geppert, Stockholm University, Sweden
Maria Gritsevitch, University of Helsinki, Finland
Erik Ilbis , University of Tartu, Estonia
René Laufer , Baylor University, Texas, USA
Joseph A. Nuth, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, USA
Wendy Okolo, NASA Ames Research Center, USA
Mihkel Pajusalu, MIT, USA and Tartu Observatory, Estonia
Jaan Praks, Aalto University, Fi
Andris Slavinskis, NASA Ames Research Center, USA and Tartu Observatory, Estonia
Colin Snodgrass, Open University, UK
Morio Toyoshima, NICT, Japan
Kaupo Voormansik, University of Tartu, Estonia

Preliminary programme
The PRELIMINARY programme of the summer course can be downloaded here as an .xls file here.

Poster session
The poster session will be held on Monday 6th, 2018. DIN A0 in portrait format should be OK. Poster walls are gray.

Participants will be allowed a 4 minutes presentation for their posters (no discussion). The presentation will take place in the lecture room at the Estonian Biocentre at Tartu University, Riia 26b. Powerpoint slides can be used. For a smooth run of these poster talks, they are asked to bring their talks on a memory stick.

Posters can be printed at Kaanoni Koopiakeskus, W.Struve 3. On-line submisssions of posters for printing is possible. The organisers cannot give any guarantee for timely printing of posters. Early submissions of posters to print out is thus highly encouraged.

Mission proposals
We have got almost 30 different proposals for mission themes and thus we will not have time to discuss them all in detail. Therefore we have decided the following:

  • Every presenter is allowed 4 minutes to present her/his suggested mission (use of PowerPoint slide is allowed) on Wednesday evening to convince your colleagues about her/his mission subject. Imagine you are in front of an ESA or NASA Commission, so be aware that not all of the people will be micro- and nanosatellite expert.
  • Some questions from the audience are allowed after the presentation, but we have to keep the time (it will be a long day).
  • Afterwards we have a discussion and/or a vote about which themes will be discussed further.
  • If you want to present your mission theme please just drop a short line to Wolf Geppert (
  • Also, cooperative presentations by more than one participant are allowed (but the time limit of 4 minute remains).
  • Some of you suggested technical developments. These are probably of general interest and should also be presented.
  • We strongly recommend that you read the ESA Call for a Fast (F) mission opportunity in ESA's Science Programme for a launch in the 2026-2028 timeframe. Some of you might fancy submitting a preliminary proposal (deadline 25 October)

There will be a halfday excursion to the Ice Age Centre and the Lake Peipus area with a visit to one of the Old Believers' villages. This will take place halfway into the summer school, i.e. after the lecture part and allow the participants to refresh their brains and to have first discussions of the projects in an informal setting.There will also be an evening walk through the old city on Saturday 11th.

Tere tulemast Eestisse!