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Mission Control Systems

Terma is a leading supplier of ground system solutions to support satellite missions. Terma has worked with all system components and associated processes for managing, monitoring, and controlling satellites.


Introduction

After more than 25 years supplying Spacecraft Control Systems to customers, today Terma offers two product lines to suite different market needs.

THEOS-1_464GISTDA (Thailand) THEOS-1 Satellite

CCS5 is the latest Terma control system product, building on our many years of experience and customer feedback. It offers incredible scalability – it can support the simplest cubesat through to large constellations. It is designed with performance and compatibility with existing systems in mind, supporting data exchange with other systems though industry-standards interfaces (such as CCSDS SLE), as well as commonality in operations concepts to ensure fast training and transition of operations staff.

For those customers who have already invested in systems based on ESA’s MICONYS/SCOS-2000 spacecraft control system infrastructure, Terma also provides tailored SCOS-2000 based systems and related support. As an original developer of the system, Terma can ensure that the customer obtains the most efficient and economical tailoring for each specific space mission.

Terma is also a key contributor to the development of the next generation infrastructure software – the so-called EGS-CC – and will be able to offer systems based on this technology as soon as it is qualified for spacecraft operations.

Amongst our references include:

  • The first SCOS-2000 system for ESOC – Integral – which has now been operational for nearly 15 years.
  • The first fully automated SCOS-2000 Control System for RadarSat-2/Canada – again this is still operational after 12 years in orbit
  • More recent systems include the BepiColombo and ExoMars 2016 missions
  • Our CCS5 system is used for THEOS-1 in Thailand and has been selected for a German SAR mission (three satellites).
EXOMARS-TGO_464The ESA ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (image appears courtesy of ESA)

 


Benefits

The systems are flight proven – some of the systems we have delivered are still in use 15 years after launch.

They are open systems, allowing a customer to add a wide variety of other packages to suit their own needs, such as flight dynamics and mission planning.

They are deployable in a wide variety of configurations – from single, simple satellites through to more complex fleet/constellation operations.

The systems will run on a variety of hardware – from a single laptop through to very powerful virtualized systems. This ensures that price/performance issues are more easily matched to customer requirements.

With the increasing use of standards, we find that our systems require little or no customization for specific missions. Where changes are requested by our customers, they are normally for changes to make operations more efficient for their specific mission.

Both the CCS5 and SCOS-2000 systems are also available in pre-launch AIT configurations, such that the same system can be used for testing and operating the satellites.

The CCS5 system is Terma IPR, and therefore is subject to no export restrictions. SCOS-2000 has some export restrictions – please contact us for further details.

Radarsat _2_464The Canadian RadarSat-2 Satellite

Functionality

Our systems provide all the functions typical of a modern spacecraft control system. They are compliant with the CCSDS and ESA standards for Packet Telemetry and Packet Telecommands. They also implement many of the higher level services defined by the ESA Packet Utilization Standard. It is able to talk to all ESA ground stations and any other ground stations that use the CCSDS Space Link Extension (SLE) protocol. Other ground station equipment is also supported (Cortex, Amergint).

Functions included in the systems include:

  • Telemetry monitoring
  • Telecommand sending and monitoring
  • Archiving
  • Retrieval tools
  • Ground station interfacing
  • Onboard software management
  • Redundancy management
  • User management

The systems have a comprehensive and intuitive MMI. Displays include:

  • Alphanumeric, scrolling, and graphic displays for telemetry parameters
  • Telemetry packet displays
  • Mimic diagrams – also for telemetry parameters
  • Windows for manual and automatic release of telecommands
  • Out of limits displays
  • Log displays

The CCS5 system was a completely new implementation. It was based on lessons learned from working with SCOS-2000 for many years – both the good and the bad. It also was designed to better support the standards that have emerged over the last 20 years. It has a completely new code base and a modern, open user interface. 

Main _Control _Room _at _ESA_s _Space _Operations _Centre - New _464The ESA/ESOC Main Control Room (image appears courtesy of ESA)