Student Competition

26th Annual Frank J. Redd
Student Competition

The student competition provides students with the opportunity to share their work on small satellite concepts and missions. Awards are given to competition finalists presenting at the Small Satellite Conference.

Papers may be presented on relevant study and research related to:

  • Small satellites, their systems and subsystems
  • Mission concepts
  • Related infrastructure (launch vehicles or ground systems)

Concepts (actual or proposed) may include hardware, uniquely applicable software, or mission results that serve to advance the state of the art or broaden the application of small satellites.

Participation and Eligibility

Participation is open to all full-time undergraduate and graduate students pursuing a bachelor's or master's degree in an engineering or scientific discipline at an accredited college or university.

Not eligible

  • Students enrolled in a PhD degree program
    (PhD students are invited to submit abstracts for consideration in the technical program)
  • Salaried government or industry sponsored students
  • Students graduating prior to January 2018

Registration Required

Student are required to register for the Conference at a reduced, all-inclusive registration fee of $175. Students must provide their own transportation and lodging.

Participation Rules

  • Each author listed must submit his/her own author information sheet as part of paper submission.
  • Participants may not author or co-author more than one paper.
  • Papers are limited to three authors.
  • All persons identified as authors must participate in the oral presentation—plan accordingly.
  • Contact with judges directly, either before or after the competition is prohibited and may result in disqualification.

Authors failing to comply any of these rules may be disqualified.

Paper Guidelines

  • Papers may not exceed 12 single-space pages.
    • Page count includes all graphs, figures, tables, references and footnotes.
    • Papers exceeding 12 pages will be marked down.
  • Margins must be a minimum of one inch (1") on all sides, not including headers, footnotes and page numbers.
  • Papers must be double-column format and must be typed in 10-point font or larger.
  • Each page should be numbered at the bottom.
  • The first page must include the title of the paper, full names of all authors, name of the college or university, and the name of student's faculty advisor.

Student Paper Template (Word Doc)

Paper Submission

Student papers due: April 17, 2018 at 12:00 midnight MDT

To enter the competition, email an electronic copy (PDF format) of the complete paper and competed author form to: marianne.sidwell@usurf.usu.edu

Author Form (PDF)

Paper Selection

A panel of judges drawn from industry, academia, and government will score each paper. Papers will be scored using the first three of the four criteria listed below. The top six papers will be selected for presentation at the Conference. Following presentation, the final scores are tallied and the Student Competition results are announced at the Student Awards Ceremony.

Scoring Criteria

  • Technical Content and/or Scientific Merit (40%)
  • Industry Relevance (15%)
  • Clarity of Writing (20%)
  • Presentation and Response to Questions (25%)


Student finalists must present their papers in the Student Competition technical session Wednesday, August 8, 2018.

All authors identified in the technical paper must participate in the oral presentation—plan accordingly.

Students will be given a maximum of 12 minutes to present their paper, followed by 3 minutes for questions. Presentations exceeding 12 minutes will be marked down.