The CubeSat concept and program started in 1999 at the Space Systems Development Laboratory of Stanford University. The idea was to meet an educational need to define a meaningful
satellite mission that could be developed within a timeframe of a year
or two, be of very-low cost, and be of very low mass for reduced launch
costs. It turns out that picosatellites offer very promising scenarios
to demonstrate new small-scale space technologies and mission concepts.