I’m a sophomore at MIT who joined PSS as an extern over Independent Activities Period (IAP). Free to choose how to spend the month of January, students can take an extended vacation, attend short, intensive classes, do research in MIT’s various labs, etc. Many like myself choose to participate in short internships with MIT alumni – the correct lingo for this type of job experience is “externship”.
I was assigned the task of 3D modeling a reaction wheel for a 25 kg satellite. Essentially, the wheel controls the orientation of the satellite in space. Comprised of a small axial flux motor and a flywheel for added inertia, the wheel sits at 40 mm tall and 80 mm wide. It must spin in both directions, and meet tight dimensional constraints. I believed I really had my work cut out for me.