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Delay/Disruption Tolerance Networking (DTN) Implementation and Utilization Options on the International Space StationThe International Space Station (ISS) is in an operational configuration and nearing final assembly. With its maturity and diverse payloads onboard, the opportunity exists to extend the orbital lab into a facility to exercise and demonstrate Delay/Disruption Tolerant Networking (DTN). DTN is an end-to-end network service providing communications through environments characterized by intermittent connectivity, variable delays, high bit error rates, asymmetric links and simplex links. The DTN protocols, also known as bundle protocols, provide a store-and-forward capability to accommodate end-to-end network services. Key capabilities of the bundling protocols include: the Ability to cope with intermittent connectivity, the Ability to take advantage of scheduled and opportunistic connectivity (in addition to always up connectivity), Custody Transfer, and end-to-end security. Colorado University at Boulder and the Huntsville Operational Support Center (HOSC) have been developing a DTN capability utilizing the Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGBA) payload resources onboard the ISS, at the Boulder Payload Operations Center (POC) and at the HOSC. The DTN capability is in parallel with and is designed to augment current capabilities. The architecture consists of DTN endpoint nodes on the ISS and at the Boulder POC, and a DTN node at the HOSC. The DTN network is composed of two implementations; the Interplanetary Overlay Network (ION) and the open source DTN2 implementation. This paper presents the architecture, implementation, and lessons learned. By being able to handle the types of environments described above, the DTN technology will be instrumental in extending networks into deep space to support future missions to other planets and other solar system points of interest. Thus, this paper also discusses how this technology will be applicable to these types of deep space exploration missions.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Holbrook, Mark (NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Pitts, Robert Lee (NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Gifford, Kevin K. (NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Jenkins, Andrew (NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Kuzminsky, Sebastian (NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Huntsville, AL, United States)
Date Acquired
August 24, 2013
Publication Date
April 25, 2010
Subject Category
Space Sciences (General)
Report/Patent Number
Meeting Information
SpaceOps Conference 2010(Huntsville, AL)
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits