Hardware-in-the-Loop (HIL) Testing

When validating small satellite control systems, it is necessary to test sensors using flight-like inputs to observe the control hardware performance and validate associated outputs. Replicating the physical on-orbit conditions (zero G, zero friction, magnetic field, star field, etc.) in the laboratory is complicated and often impossible to perform. SDL provides mission-specific hardware-in-the-loop testing to properly mimic sensor input and measure sensor actuator outputs in day-in-the-life scenarios. This reduces mission risk by validating control loops under simulated flight-like conditions using the actual flight control hardware as the device under test (DUT).


  • HIL Testing for:
    • ADCS
    • GN&C
    • Power
    • Communications
    • GPS
  • High fidelity simulations of sensor characteristics and performance
  • Wide array of interfacing options for DUT
  • Precise measurement and logging of actuator controls and commands



Dynamic Ionosphere CubeSat Experiment

Twin CubeSats mapped the geomagnetic Storm Enhanced Density (SED) plasma bulge and plume formations in Earth’s ionosphere.


Auroral Spatial Structures Probe

ASSP was designed to measure the spatial and temporal variation of the energy flow in the upper atmosphere in and around the aurora to better understand global temperature changes in the thermosphere.


Hyper-Angular Rainbow Polarimeter

The HARP instrument is a wide field-of-view hyper-angular imaging polarimeter designed to characterize aerosol and cloud properties.

Spacecraft Platform

SDL’s spacecraft platform is a set of standard and customizable components that can be assembled into multiple mission configurations while minimizing non-recurring engineering costs and development schedules.

Various DoD Programs