Low-impact space weather sensors and the U.S. national security spacecraft
Olson, Dennis R.
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Incorporating inexpensive low-impact targeted surface charging (plasma) and total ionizing dose (radiation) sensors onto national security spacecraft to monitor real-time environments local to each spacecraft will close a gap in the U.S. space weather observation network. Evaluation of the current space weather monitoring architecture identified key stakeholders and their needs, as well as a gap in targeted data. This paper outlines a solution to improve national security spacecraft anomaly resolution and resiliency while decreasing system life-cycle cost. A technical assessment of available products found that low-cost, low-impact spacecraft charging and radiation sensors exist that meet stakeholder needs. However, upon evaluating the acquisition process, weaknesses in the Joint Capabilities Integration and Development System (JCIDS) prevented the stakeholder's requirements being met. Physical modifications essential for the current space weather observation network to meet the stakeholder's needs were identified in an IDEF0 model that represented the functional decomposition for integrated and proliferated targeted sensors using ViTech© CORE system architecting software. A risk assessment for sensor integration during each phase of the acquisition process resulted in a recommendation for national security space enterprise leadership to bypass the JCIDS process and require all national security space systems integrate low-impact space weather sensors prior to Milestone-C.
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