European Space Agency

Megaconstellation SCS – Multisatellite Support – Phase 1

AddToAny

Objectives

The Terma CCS5/SCS5 product has gained wide acceptance as a test system (central checkout system) since its launch in 2012. The system is new, using modern technologies. One of the implementation goals was to remain compatible with other systems, such as the ESA SCOS-2000 system, to allow easy data transfer between such legacy systems and the new system.

More recently it has started to be used also as a satellite control system kernel.

It was originally built for medium/large satellites with a single satellite per mission. The objectives of this investment are to enhance the product such that it can readily support both the traditional market, but also the newer market of constellations of (very) small satellites that are emerging.

The end product should be a control system that can support both constellations of many satellites, potentially thousands, as well as the traditional market without increasing the needed resources (computing…) and price to a level where it is not economic for these new operators.

Challenges

To retain the ease of installation and configuration of the current product.

To ensure the new solution does not require a significant increase in computing resources to run.

Benefits

The current product is well received by users as an intuitive system that is easy to work with. This is to be carried forward into the mega-constellation control system market, together with additional features to ease the monitoring and control of many satellites at the same time.

Features

The product enhancements cover:

  • A simple interface for configuring such constellations
  • A messaging layer to support summary views of the constellation
  • An autopilot feature to ease the automation of constellation operations

System Architecture

The existing CCS5 product is adapted to run several instances in a single virtual machine (64 is assumed as a limit). For constellations with more than this, additional VMs can be set-up. We estimate that for a simple nanosat (cubesat) around 50 is an optimal number to run on a 36 vCPU virtual machine. For more demanding satellites, the number would be less.

The archive is adapted to have a single archive for all satellites in the constellation.

The product can be deployed equally well in a private cloud or using public cloud services – e.g. Amazon Web Services.

Plan

Work started in July 2018 as prior work.

Project Kicked off 7 December 2018

Prior Work Review/PDR: 18 December 2018

CDR: End January 2019

TRR/FAT: End March 2019

Final Review End March/early April 2019

Current status

Project completed May 2019.

Contacts

ESA Contacts

Status date

Monday, May 13, 2019 - 08:26