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faq /// faq /// faq /// faq

Last Updated: 5/16/2023

Check back here often. Responses to all submitted frequently asked questions will be posted here and updated regularly. Have a question you don’t see answered here? Send it to .

Rules and Eligibility

Can I still sign up for the HAS4 contest?
Unfortunately registration for HAS4 closed at the end of the Qualifying Event. You can still practice the challenges from past HAS events by visiting the Players Corner page.  

Who is eligible to compete in Hack-A-Sat?
The Hack-A-Sat competition is open to all individuals, nationalities, ages, academic institutions and business entities, subject to the caveats in Section 5.1 of the Rules

Hack-a-sat 4 Quals

Where can I learn more about what happened at the Hack-A-Sat 4 Qualification Event?
Here’s the official scoreboard from HAS4 Quals.  All Hack-A-Sat 4 quals challenges and solutions are available to the public at GitHub – cromulencellc/hackasat-qualifier-2023Check back soon for the HAS4 Quals Challenge writeups and even some source code from our Finalist teams.   

What kind of skills are needed to be successful in the Hack-A-Sat Competitions?
Successful teams will need to have a diverse set of skills from both the cyber and space domains.  This prize competition is meant to create a two-way bridge between traditional cyber security professionals who are accustomed to categories like web, forensics, crypto, binaries, protocols, etc, and satellite designers and operators who think in terms of TLEs, quaternions, and two body problems. Make sure to visit our Players’ Corner for a deep dive on required skills! 
Can you summarize the Hack-A-Sat 4 qualification event challenge categories?
Here are the official Hack-A-Sat 4 Qualifying Event categories, so you can ensure you’ve got the right mix of skills on your team: 
  • Aerocapture the Flag: Correct orbit, adjust attitude, and prepare for entry to capture the spaceflags!
  • Can’t Stop the Signal, Mal: Transmitters are live. Can you handle the signal?
  • Pure Pwnage: You hack faster with your hoodie on
  • Anomaly Review Bored: Meeting time is over, satellite operating time is just beginning
  • Van Halen Radiation Belt: At 640 to 59,000 km my unpredictable effects are felt
  • The Magician: Aspirational and inexperienced, a cultivation of potential
  • The Kitchen: Get cooking with these starter challenges

Hack-A-Sat 4 Finals

What is this Moonlighter thing?
Moonlighter is the world’s first purpose-built satellite just for cybersecurity training and research.  It’s literally a hacking sandbox in space, that will be launched in 2023 and host the Hack-A-Sat 4 Finals competition.  

When is Moonlighter launching?
Moonlighter will be launched as part of an International Space Station (ISS) resupply mission from Kennedy Space Center on SpX-28, currently planned for June 3rd.  

Why are there 5 teams at Finals this year?
On careful consideration, five is the ideal number of teams to ensure fair and interesting game dynamics with the finite number of orbital passes Moonlighter will make during the game hours at DEF CON 31.  

Why is the deadline to commit to playing in HAS4 Finals so long after HAS4 Quals?
To mitigate the overlap of Hack-A-Sat 4 and DEF CON CTF at DEF CON, we are setting our deadline for team commitments after teams have had a chance to compete and see how they placed in both Hack-a-Sat 4 and DEF CON CTF qualification rounds. This way any team that qualifies for both final events can make an informed decision. 


Is there Hack-A-Sat promotional material that I can share on social media platforms?
The Hack-A-Sat team would be thrilled to have you share any content posted from our public Twitter handle (@Hack_A_Sat) or our official website Be sure to #HackASat4 when you share!  

Where can I get my hands on some HAS4 swag?
Glad you asked! Head on over to our online store to get the latest HAS4 swag.

Hack-A-Sat 3 Finals

Where can I learn more about what happened at the Hack-A-Sat 3 Final Event?
Check out the highlights from our HAS3 Recap & Awards Show.
All Hack-A-Sat 3 Finals challenges and source code are located here:
And the Hack-A-Sat 3 Finals solution writeups from our finalists are located here:  HAS3 Finalist Writeups
You can also check out our game organizers blog post here:  Hack-A-Sat 2022 Finals: Teams on the attack — Cromulence 

Who won HAS3?  How many teams qualified for HAS3 Finals?
Poland Can Into Space took home 1st place and $50K at HAS3 Finals.  SpaceBitsRUs placed 2nd ($30K) and Solar Wine placed 3rd ($20K).  Eight teams total were selected for the Hack-A-Sat 3 Finals from over 800 teams competing in Quals.

Did the Hack-A-Sat 3 Final Event use virtual or real satellites?
For Hack-A-Sat 3, we went all digital.  Teams were given a digital twin – a virtual representation of actual satellite – for training and testing before and during the final event.  Using a digital twin allowed us to closely replicate satellite operations and orbital mechanics, a crucial educational opportunity as we move towards Hack-A-Sat 4, the world’s first CTF in space on an actual orbiting satellite.