Development & Integration
DSoft Technology has the ability to perform the following types of analyses to provide engineering and technical analysis support for your satellite and space control mission. For additional information and examples of our work, please click here.
- Forecasting antenna loading
- Forecasted number of satellite vehicle contacts/day
- Forecasting of communication capacity and requirements
- Scheduling loading analysis, to include deconfliction capability
- "What If" antenna loading analysis
- Antenna location and system architectural analysis and optimizations
Some of the following demos require Java.
SATRAK (v7) is the replacement for SATRAK (v6), a legacy DOS application. SATRAK generates ground site look angles and ground traces of earth orbiting satellites. The new version provides a modern and interactive user interface suited for current Windows operating systems. SATRAK (v7) was created using the Space Analysis INtegration Toolkit (SAINT), which demonstrated the complexity of tools that can be built and deployed with SAINT. The new version allows analysts to exercise various Astrodynamic Standards (SGP4 - Satellite General Perturbations 4, LAMOD - Look Angle Module, SimOrb - Orbit simulation, Decay - Satellite decay & lifetime using King-Hele, BLUE - Bob's Launch Update Ensemble, Sensor Coverage) and view the results on 2D & 3D maps, as plain text and/or as tabular data. The tabular data provides advanced sorting, filtering, and grouping capabilities as well as rules based conditional formatting. A graphing tool was also integrated into SATRAK to evaluate changes to a particular satellite's orbit or to perform statistical analysis on the satellite catalogue using Two Line Element (TLE) data. In addition to the integrated 3D view in SATRAK, a NASA WorldWind plug-in has also been developed to show satellite orbits.
The Space Analysis INtegration Toolkit (SAINT) is a toolkit and framework that allows a user to create a new application by combining SAINT components, assemblies, and applications. A key element of the framework is the inclusion of the Air Force Space Command (AFSPC) Astrodynamic Standard(s) and Algorithm(s) Library (ASAL), and other algorithms developed by AFSPC/A9. Currently SAINT includes components and assemblies for SGP4 - Satellite General Perturbations 4, SP - Specialized Perturbations, LAMOD - Look Angle Module, SimOrb - Orbit simulation, Decay - Satellite decay & lifetime using King-Hele and BLUE - Bob's Launch Update Ensemble. COMBO - Computation of Miss Between Orbits and ROTAS - Report/Observation Association) algorithms are being added this year. SAINT is the ideal toolkit for building space analysis applications as it is flexible and facilitates the development of tailored applications in a short period (approximately one to three days depending upon the complexity of the application). Built-into the toolkit are data utilities to persist data inputs and outputs in a variety of formats including eXtensible Markup Language (XML) and Microsoft™ Excel. Also included are 2D and 3D visualization components that can be connected to the output of the ASAL components to display sensor coverage and satellite orbits.
This is the most basic usage of the SDK. It displays the default globe with its default layers. It includes capabilities such as a compass and status bar that are common to most applications, and presents Earth within a star field and with an atmosphere. It requires only 6 lines of code to instantiate everything seen here.
WMS Layer Manager
This example application demonstrates the SDK WMS capabilities. It features a WMS layer panel that allows you to access any WMS server and layers.
To add a server, click on the “+” tab and enter the server url. After the WMS discovery process, the list of available layers will be displayed. Select one to add it to the current globe layer list. Unselect it to remove it.
Automated Testing Framework
The Automated Testing Framework (ATF) is utility tool used to easily test and verify any Astrodynamic Standard(s) and Algorithm(s) Library (ASAL). It provides a very intuitive user interface where the user can create and manage various test cases and group multiple test cases together in bundles. Tests can then be run against any and/or all cases in a specific bundle. Verification of the test results is performed by comparing output results versus baseline output files. A separate tool called VERDICT is used for this comparison and can be configured as to which accuracy the results have to match. Test cases, bundles and results are stored in XML format so they can be easily shared with other users. The tool can be easily extended to include other types of algorithms.
Space Brawler/ Maneuver Detection and Recovery (MDR)
The Maneuver Detection and Recovery (MDR) is a MATLAB-based set of stand-alone programs that interfaces with Space Brawler to perform explicit frequent revisit, catalogue maintenance, and maneuver detection/recovery on tactically monitored objects. Sensor lists and objects are sent from Space Brawler initially, and when satellite maneuvers take place new position vectors are also sent (these constitute “truth” data). MDR receives these data and, at each time step, schedules the satellites for tracking; determines whether tracking in fact took place, uses the tracking data to perform maneuver detection, and then performs element set differential corrections either to update the standing element set or to begin the maneuver recovery process. The updated states, along with maneuver detection information, are sent back to MDR after each time step; these files constitute “perception” of the situation.
The programs take account of sensor outages, weather outages, probability of detection of targets, sensor priorities, and scheduling limitations (in a simplified manner). They use the AFSPC/A9 Astrodynamic Standards for determining look angles (LAMOD) (and thus unnoised sensor observations), observation association (OBS), calculation of residuals for each observation against the associated element set that determines whether a maneuver has occurred (ROTAS) and batch differential correction (BATCH DC). Because these programs are generic with regard to sensors and satellites used (these items being specified in input files), they can be used for maneuver detection/recovery for either red or blue systems.
The first iteration of MDR in Space Brawler incorporated older versions of the Astrodyanamic Standards standalone executables which proved to be problematic as they were slow and didn’t take into account updates made to fix inaccuracies or logic incorporated into new versions of the algorithms. DSoft Technology made significant enhancements to the MDR module in Space Brawler by incorporating the Space Analysis INtegration Toolkit (SAINT) Dynamic Link Libraries (DLLs). The LAMOD executable was replaced with the SAINT LAMOD DLL with significant improvement in performance. The function in BatchDC that generates osculating elements from mean elements was replaced with a call to the SAINT AstroFunc DLL that significantly improved accuracy. The integration of SAINT DLLs into a MATLAB based program proved that the SAINT DLLs could be integrated into applications other than .Net Framework ones.
Future enhancements to MDR include the replacement of OBS, ROTAS and BatchDC standalone executables with the SAINT DLLs.
Covariance Matrix Visualization (CMV)
Covariance Matrix Visualization (CMV) is a standalone Windows Forms control developed by DSoft Technlogy that allows the user to visualize one or more covariance matrices of the same or different satellite as three-dimensional (3D) ellipsoids. The 3 axes of the ellipsoid represent the XYZ or UVW eigenvalues / eigenvectors derived from each covariance matrix. The ellipsoid can also be scaled based on a user-defined sigma value that will increase/decrease the ellipsoids radius. Calculation of the covariance matrix itself is outside of the scope of the user control but can be accomplished using Astrodynamic Standards suite of DLLs.
The CMV user control has a very simple architecture. The 3D rendering of the ellipsoid is implemented using OpenTK, a free open-source .Net library that wraps around OpenGL. The translation of the covariance matrix into ellipsoid parameters is handled by a custom math class in order to separate user interface logic from business logic.