This work presents new design of an on-board computer utilizing COTS, non-space qualified components. Common
attributes of already used computers for pico- and nanosatellites are presented as well, and the need for new solutions of
on-board computer for such satellites (concentrating on CubeSat satellites) is explained. Requirements for electronic
devices which are sent to low Earth orbit in CubeSats are described widely. Finally, first version of architecture of onboard
computer for CubeSat is presented (PICARD project – Picosatellite Computer Architecture Development).
Computer utilizes two processing units - primary: low power unit (ATmega128 microcontroller) and secondary: high
performance unit (Spartan-6, SRAM FPGA). Basic features of these devices are presented, clarifying the choice of these
units to the project.