How is the Software and Simulation Laboratory equipped?
The Laboratory is equipped with commercial, public domain and special purpose software packages, computers and related equipment. It includes the following facilities:
- Software Development Tools Environment – Once in orbit flight software is very difficult to repair, so this facility evaluates promising modern techniques to generate reliable software in a more efficient way. The aim is to build software on a 'correct by construction' basis. This is based on modelling the software specification and design before coding starts.
- Software Validation Facilities – This facility allows testing the flight software in a realistic simulated onboard processor environment. It can be used for so called Independent Software Verification and Validation activities as well as for reproducing software problems encountered in orbit.
- EGSE Reference Facility – This multi-computer facility comprises hardware and software with the capability to manage the check-out process of a satellite, starting from communication with a satellite via its radio links to the procedures to execute a test employing specialised display devices.
- Virtual Spacecraft Reference Facility – This is an infrastructure including a simulation framework, a model of a complete satellite and its flight software, an on-board processor and a data bus representative of the flight hardware and an EGSE system as operations console. It provides the core of the End-to-end Avionics Test Bench shared with the Data Systems and Control Systems Laboratories as part of the joint Avionics System Laboratory.
- Virtual Reality Simulation Facility – This simulation facility creates three-dimensional spacecraft models used for the training of astronauts and ground crews, early stage mission studies and operational planning.
- Man Machine Interface Test Bed – A computer system used to test the usability of specialized devices, computers and software used by astronauts and ground crews for manned space missions.
A new Mission Performance Simulation Facility is in preparation, aimed at providing an integrated framework for the testing of satellite instruments and mission performance on an end-to-end basis.
Last update: 4 September 2013