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implementing distributed operations: a comparison of two deep space missionsTwo very different deep space exploration missions--Mars Exploration Rover and Cassini--have made use of distributed operations for their science teams. In the case of MER, the distributed operations capability was implemented only after the prime mission was completed, as the rovers continued to operate well in excess of their expected mission lifetimes; Cassini, designed for a mission of more than ten years, had planned for distributed operations from its inception. The rapid command turnaround timeline of MER, as well as many of the operations features implemented to support it, have proven to be conducive to distributed operations. These features include: a single science team leader during the tactical operations timeline, highly integrated science and engineering teams, processes and file structures designed to permit multiple team members to work in parallel to deliver sequencing products, web-based spacecraft status and planning reports for team-wide access, and near-elimination of paper products from the operations process. Additionally, MER has benefited from the initial co-location of its entire operations team, and from having a single Principal Investigator, while Cassini operations have had to reconcile multiple science teams distributed from before launch. Cassini has faced greater challenges in implementing effective distributed operations. Because extensive early planning is required to capture science opportunities on its tour and because sequence development takes significantly longer than sequence execution, multiple teams are contributing to multiple sequences concurrently. The complexity of integrating inputs from multiple teams is exacerbated by spacecraft operability issues and resource contention among the teams, each of which has their own Principal Investigator. Finally, much of the technology that MER has exploited to facilitate distributed operations was not available when the Cassini ground system was designed, although later adoption of web-based and telecommunication tools has been critical to the success of Cassini operations.
Document ID
20060051689
Document Type
Preprint (Draft being sent to journal)
External Source(s)
Authors
Mishkin, Andrew
(Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Larsen, Barbara
(Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
August 23, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 2006
Subject Category
Lunar and Planetary Science and Exploration
Meeting Information
AIAA 9th International Conference on SpaceOps Conference(Rome)
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other
Keywords
Cassini Mission
Mars Exploration Rover (MER)
distributed operations