NASA SBIR 2008 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 08-1 S4.04-9759
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Reusable Flight Software
PROPOSAL TITLE: QuickDirect - Payload Control Software Template Package

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
QuickFlex, Inc.
8401 N. New Braunfels, Suite 324
San Antonio, TX 78209 - 1144
(210) 824-2348

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Steven A Tarr
745 Meadow Glen Drive
Boulder, CO 80303 - 2945
(303) 653-5905

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 2 to 3

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
To address the need to quickly, cost-effectively and reliably develop software to control science instruments deployed on spacecraft, QuickFlex proposes to create a payload control (QuickDirect) software package that can be used by instrument developers as a template for specific missions. QuickDirect will address the generic needs of science instrument control and will provide a template for the control of mission specific detectors and mechanisms. It will contain modules for command & telemetry handling, engineering data collection and monitoring, memory upload and downloads, and software and hardware watch dog maintenance. QuickDirect will contain common command and telemetry interfaces (serial, UART, Mil-Std-1553-B) as well examples of mechanism and detector control modules. QuickDirect provides a template for the development of the specific instrument control software, freeing the QuickDirect user to focus on the interfaces and specialized processes that are specific to the detectors and mechanism, knowing that the generic payload control requirements are fully and effectively covered. While the software package is designed to operate on a processor platform dedicated to operation of the instrument, the software itself is not tied to any specific operating system or platform. Notably, QuickDirect will leverage the QuickFlex Reconfigurable Logic Manager (RLM), a set of proven software that enables simple and effective exploitation of the full range of capabilities offered by field programmable gate array (FPGA) devices, including partial dynamic reconfiguration. The QuickDirect software package will be thoroughly reviewed, tested and documented.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Many of the satellites deployed by NASA are built in-house at JPL/GFC. QuickDirect provides a useful technology that is broadly applicable and can be inserted in various internal NASA programs where payload development is planned or underway, including: numerous science programs, ground support systems, and new command and telemetry, and storage technologies on various spacecraft. Additionally, other organizations providing payloads for various NASA missions can save NASA millions of dollars in development costs and redundancies by using the proposed QuickDirect technologies. Smaller organizations which have innovative technologies, often for small satellites, lack the development tools and history to cost-effectively create supporting payload software. Organizations of all sizes will benefit from the increased flexibility of the innovative software-managed reconfigurable computing processing platform. NASA will reduce the time and costs of developing payload software, with QuickDirect's ready modification for the particular payload instrument, a working example system with documentation, test suites and a design for ground test systems, while providing reliable payload control software in an efficient and highly cost-effective manner.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The DOD has a significant focus on space and satellite technologies as outlined in the DOD's 2015 and 2020 future planning. Organizations such as the AFRL Space Vehicles Directorate, Navy SPAWAR and US Army Space Missile Defense Command (SMDC) are among a few of the DOD organizations that have various satellite technology payload projects. The QuickDirect technologies can benefit the DOD's programs and the vendors who provide payloads for them. Other applications include the commercial satellite industry. Longer term other industries which can benefit from the QuickDirect technique include the telecommunications industry and the industrial process control industry.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Computer System Architectures
On-Board Computing and Data Management
Operations Concepts and Requirements
Software Development Environments
Testing Requirements and Architectures

Form Generated on 11-24-08 11:56