The University at Buffalo Nanosatellite Laboratory (UBNL) is a diverse group of undergraduate and graduate students that develop cubesats from concept to launch. UBNL was formed in 2011 under the supervision of Dr. John Crassidis. It has included over 300 student participants since its formation who have been responsible for 20 publications, a Master’s thesis, and a PhD dissertation. Facilities of the lab include a class 1000 clean room, UHF/VHF ground station, dedication mission control room and general lab facilities.

The lab currently handles two missions: GLADOS and POLAR.

Be sure to check out our past missions on the archived page!


GLADOS, our oldest satellite, is a 6U cubesat that will be launched to low earth orbit to gather light data on space debris in geostationary orbit. This light data can be used to classify space debris, as well as to characterize the size, shape, and material properties of space debris. Military and commercial industries rely on space assets such as GPS and communication satellites for their day-to- day operations. 


Polarimetric Observer Light Analyzing Research (POLAR) mission, the students will investigate space debris, a growing issue in Earth’s orbit.

The University at Buffalo, which partnered with Rochester Institute of Technology, was one of 10 schools chosen to participate in the two-year UNP partnership to design, fabricate and test small satellites.


The UBNL Short Cycle Lab, or “SCL” provides students with the opportunity to build experience on multi-disciplinary short-term projects related to satellites and nanosatellites. The aim of the lab is to introduce students to the tools and skills of UBNL, the systems engineering process, and satellite basics.