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Transforming Our SMEX Organization by Way of Innovation, Standardization, and AutomationNASA's Small Explorer (SMEX) Flight Operations Team (FOT) is currently tackling the challenge of supporting ground operations for several satellites that have surpassed their designed lifetime and have a dwindling budget. At Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), these missions are presently being reengineered into a fleet-oriented ground system. When complete, this ground system will provide command and control of four SMEX missions, and will demonstrate fleet automation and control concepts as a pathfinder for additional mission integrations. A goal of this reengineering effort is to demonstrate new ground-system technologies that show promise of supporting longer mission lifecycles and simplifying component integration. In pursuit of this goal, the SMEX organization has had to examine standardization, innovation, and automation. A core technology being demonstrated in this effort is the GSFC Mission Services Evolution Center (GMSEC) architecture. The GMSEC architecture focuses on providing standard interfaces for ground system applications to promote application interoperability. Building around commercial Message Oriented Middleware and providing a common messaging standard allows GMSEC to provide the capabilities necessary to support integration of new software components into existing missions and increase the level of interaction within the system. For SMS, GMSEC has become the technology platform to transform flight operations with the innovation and automation necessary to reduce operational costs. The automation technologies supported in SMEX are built upon capabilities provided by the GMSEC architecture that allows the FOT to further reduce the involvement of the console, operator. Initially, SMEX is automating only routine operations, such as safety and health monitoring, basic commanding, and system recovery. The operational concepts being developed here will reduce the need for staffed passes and are a necessity for future fleet management. As this project continues to evolve, additional innovations beyond GMSEC and automation have, and will continue to be developed. The team developed techniques for migrating ground systems of existing on-orbit assets. The tools necessary to monitor and control software failures were integrated and tailored for operational environments. All this was done with a focus of extending fleet operations to mission beyond SMU. The result of this work is the foundation for a broader fleet-capable ground system that will include several missions supported by the Space Science Mission Operations Project.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Madden, Maureen (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Crouse, Pat (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Carry, Everett (Emergent Space Technologies, Inc. United States)
Esposito, timothy (Emergent Space Technologies, Inc. United States)
Parker, Jeffrey (Honeywell Technology Solutions, Inc. Lanham, MD, United States)
Bradley, David (Honeywell Technology Solutions, Inc. Lanham, MD, United States)
Date Acquired
August 23, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2006
Subject Category
Space Sciences (General)
Meeting Information
SpaceOps 2006(Rome)
Distribution Limits