The design and implementation of the Petite Amateur Naval Satellite (PANSAT) user services software
Hunter, George Kenneth
Horning, James A.
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PANSAT is an experimental spread spectrum, store and forward communications micro satellite. The Chief of Naval Operations C4I staff (N6) sponsors the project in order to determine the feasibility and effectiveness of using such a low cost satellite to augment or eventually replace the existing military satellite communications architecture. While more than eight years of work has gone into the project, most of the nearly sixty theses thus far have dealt with hardware development. Prior to this thesis, the operations of the satellite were not formally defined, nor the desired software experiments specified. This thesis develops a detailed definition of the communications software and operating parameters for PANSAT. The formally specified communications software provides electronic mail, binary file transfer, and direct real time information exchange. This research also designs and develops experimental features which are non-existent on current micro satellites. The new features included provide the spacecraft with a pseudo positional awareness for a system with no sensor support for such, implement a new application layer protocol to optimize data communications, and perform self analysis to find and correct the effects of space anomalies in conjunction with a ground station. This thesis also implements a subset of the formally specified software for initial operations to begin with spacecraft's launch in October of 1998. Further implementation and refinement will be based on actual operational results from PANSAT.
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