Lettiere, Christopher; Raimondo, Nat; Eglin Air Force Base; TASC (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      The U.S. Air Force has developed GPS-based instrumentation systems to support both test and training activities. In support of recent large-scale exercises, interfaces were developed to employ existing test and training assets in a synthetic battlefield. The writers propose exploration of similar approaches to overcome the challenge of developing a common approach to test and training instrumentation.
    • Smart Sensor Network System

      Gen-Kuong, Fernando; Karolys, Alex; Endevco (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      This paper describes a Smart Sensor Network System for applications requiring sensors connected in a multidrop configuration in order to minimize interconnecting cables. The communication protocol was optimized for high speed data collection. The Smart Sensor Network System was developed with the following goals in mind: cost reduction, reliability and performance increase.
    • Automating Signal Conditioning Setup Through Integration with Sensor Information

      Tate, Jeffrey J.; Caterpillar Inc. (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      Caterpillar Inc. has been testing construction and mining equipment using Computerized Analysis Vans for two decades. During our latest van upgrade, we chose to move to PCM/FM from FM/FM mainly to increase the channel count. We also replaced our old signal conditioning that used span and balance potentiometers with computer programmable signal conditioning. This new signal conditioning requires that the gain and balance point be calculated for every channel on each test. The formulas for these calculations depend on the sensor, the signal conditioning card used, and the test requirements. Due to the number and variety of machines tested at the Caterpillar Proving Grounds, these calculations needed to be automated. Using a few initial parameters and the information from our sensor calibration database, each channel’s balance point, gain, and expected slope are calculated. This system has increased productivity, accuracy, and consistency over manually calculating these parameters. This paper covers the sensor database, the calculated parameters and an overview of the way the system works.

      Reagan, J. A.; Schooley, L. C.; Dean, A.; Goisman, S.; King, B.; Ohnstad, M.; Raby, S.; University of Arizona (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      This student paper was produced as part of the team design competition in the University of Arizona course ECE 485, Radiowaves, and Telemetry. It describes the design of a telemetry support package for interplanetary exploration. Control and processing of telemetric signals between an earth based control station, an exploratory orbiter and probe pods are the focus of this design. Using this design data retrieval is achieved at a highly reliable rate of 1 error in 10^-10 bits. The exploratory orbiter, carrying a payload of probes, is launched and proceeds along its predetermined trajectory. Commands from the earth-based control station is used to send the orbiter to planetary destinations. The craft then establishes a stable non-geosynchronous orbit. Several probe pods are launched towards the planet at predetermined locations. These probe pods collect and send data, as well as system monitoring information to the orbiting craft. The orbiting craft then retrieves the signals generated by all pods and relays that information to an earth-based control station.

      Harrison, Keith; Blevins, William; AlliedSignal Technical Services Corporation (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      The Low Earth Orbit Terminal (LEO-T) developed by AlliedSignal for NASA Wallops is a fully autonomous satellite tracking system which provides a reliable, high quality, satellite data collection and dissemination service. The procurement was initiated by NASA, in an effort to provide more tracking capacity with a decreasing budget. A large mission set of NASA satellites in the next decade will not require the performance of existing large aperture systems. NASA is planning to use the larger aperture antennas to only support those missions needing the higher performance. The remainder of the missions will be supported with the smaller LEO-Ts, which are smaller, significantly less expensive, and fully automated. The procurement is also an attempt at a first step towards fostering commercialization and privatization of small station acquisition and services. The system design features a modular architecture to simplify integration and to support affordable future expansion. This paper begins with a brief summary of the LEO-T program, then provides the design details and capabilities of the LEO-T system.

      Wigfall, Glenn D.; Bahia, Alberto A.; U.S. Army Armament, Research, Development and Engineering Center (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      The Army’s continuing effort to develop self-guided, anti-tank weapon systems has been fueled by successful development of an earlier generation of smart weapons. These self-guided systems, also labeled “brilliant weapons,” will present a natural progression to “smart” weapons development and testing. What has been critical to the success of these smart weapons development programs has been an end-to-end testability provided by on-board telemetry methods. The end-to-end test procedures can be efficiently performed in a static laboratory environment where space is available. On board the smart weapon, end-to-end testability is less feasible due to space and bandwidth limitations. The STAFF XM943 projectile development program makes use of a dual telemetry link to transmit an array of measurements which characterize the performance of the projectile in and end-to-end fashion. The dual telemetry systems provide analog measurement capability to evaluate system component-level functions and digital measurement capability to evaluate a system processor which lends itself to computer processing. The digital data is intrinsic to smart weapon systems since they typically employ embedded microprocessors for projectile system control. The STAFF XM943 electronic system is controlled by a TMS320C30 microprocessor. The dual telemetry system employs a traditional FM/FM technique for monitoring a number of analog functions and a “quasi-traditional” PCM/FM scheme for digital transmission. This paper discusses the implementation of this dual telemetry approach for the XM943 Projectile System.

      Mirchandani, Chandru; Daniel, Kenneth Jr; Nguyen, Diem; Hilinski, Stan; NASA (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      NASA’s use of high bandwidth packetized Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS) telemetry in the Earth Observing System (EOS) mission presents a great challenge to ground data system developers. The EOS mission calls for high data rate interfaces and small packet sizes which would dramatically increase the real-time workload on ground packet processing systems. NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) has been developing packet processing subsystems for over a decade. This paper will discuss the design of a high-rate telemetry test system and a simulation software package. The system will support CCSDS telemetry formats and perform frame synchronization, error detection and correction, packet reassembly and sorting, error checking, and data set creation. In addition, a highly automated operation environment is designed to minimize human intervention in control and monitoring, and data distribution. The design is based on a Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) Level Zero Processing (LZP) System technologies, VLSI telemetry data simulation and processing functional components, Object-Oriented Design methodologies, C++ programming environment, shareware and Open Software Foundation (OSF)/Motif-based Graphical User Interfaces (GUI).

      Brown, Barbie; Ghuman, Parminder; Medina, Johnny; Wilke, Randy; NASA; Century Computing Inc. (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      The international space community, including National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), European Space Agency (ESA), Japanese National Space Agency (NASDA) and others, are committed to using the Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS) recommendations for low earth orbiting satellites. With the advent of the CCSDS standards and the availability of direct broadcast data from a number of current and future spacecraft, a large number of users could have access to earth science data. However, to allow for the largest possible user base, the cost of processing this data must be as low as possible. By utilizing Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASIC), pipelined data processing, and advanced software development technology and tools, highly integrated CCSDS data processing can be attained in a single desktop system. This paper describes a prototype desktop system based on the Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI) bus that performs CCSDS standard frame synchronization, bit transition density decoding, Cyclical Redundancy Check (CRC) error checking, Reed-Solomon decoding, data unit sorting, packet extraction, annotation and other CCSDS service processing. Also discussed is software technology used to increase the flexibility and usability of the desktop system. The reproduction cost for the system described is less than 1/8th the current cost of commercially available CCSDS data processing systems.
    • Telemetry Data Sharing Using S/MIME

      Kalibjian, Jeffrey R.; CounterSign Software, Inc. (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      Last year the design and implementation of a secure World Wide Web based data sharing tool which could enable geographically remote contractor teams to access flight and test telemetry data securely over the Internet was presented [1]. Key technologies facilitating this capability were the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) and the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) capable web browsers and web servers. This year the applicability of the Secure Multipurpose Internet Mail Extension (S/MIME) specification is being evaluated for the transport of telemetry data via secure E-mail.

      Chalfant, Timothy A.; Irving, Charles E.; Edwards Air Force Base (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      The system throughput capacities of modern data systems exceed the bit rate capacity of current range telemetry capabilities. Coupling this with the shrinking spectrum allocated for telemetry results in a serious problem for the Test, Training, and Space telemetry users. Acknowledging this problem, the Department of Defense (DoD) has embarked on an aggressive improvement and modernization program that will benefit both the government and commercial range providers and users. The ADVANCED RANGE TELEMETRY (ARTM) program was created and funded by the Central Test and Evaluation Investment Program (CTEIP) under the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Undersecretary for Acquisition and Technology to address this problem. The ARTM program goals are to improve the efficiency of spectrum usage by changing historical methods of acquiring telemetry data and transmitting it from systems under test to range customers. The program is initiating advances in coding, compression, data channel assignment, and modulation. Due to the strong interactions of these four dimensions, the effort is integrated into a single focused program. This paper describes the ARTM program and how academia research, emerging technology, and commercial applications will lay the foundation for future development.

      Grant, Eugene; Coleman Research Corporation (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      A target missile is a unique piece of test hardware. This test tool must be highly reliable, low cost and simple and must perform any task that the developing interceptor missile planners require. The target missile must have ample power and guidance resources to put the target in a specified place in the sky at a desired time. The telemetry and measurement system for the target missile must have the same requirements as its interceptor missile but must be flexible enough to accept new requirements as they are applied to the target and its interceptor. The United States Army has tasked Coleman Aerospace to design and build this type of target missile. This paper describes and analyzes the telemetry and instrumentation system that a Hera target missile carries. This system has been flying for the past two years, has completed seven out of seven successful test flights and has accomplished all test objectives to date. The telemetry and instrumentation system is an integral part of the missile self-test system. All preflight checks and flight simulations are made with the on-board three-link telemetry system through a radio frequency (RF) link directly through the missile antenna system to a ground station antenna. If an RF transmission path is not available due to test range restrictions, a fiber-optic cable links the pulse code modulator (PCM) encoder to the receiving ground stations which include the bitsync, decommutator and recorders. With this capability, alternative testing is not limited by RF test range availability. The ground stations include two mobile stations and a factory station for all testing including preflight testing of the missile system prior to flight test launches. These three ground stations are built in a single configuration with additional equipment in the mobile units for use at remote locations. The design, fabrication, testing and utilization of these ground stations are reviewed. The telemetry system is a modification of the classical PCM system and will operate with its interceptor missile at least into the first decade from the year 2000.

      Youssef, Ahmed H.; McNamee, Stuart A.; Bowman, Dalphana; Edwards Air Force Base (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      This paper describes the status of the Edwards Digital Switch (EDS) [1] and the success of the Digital Switch Sustainment Program (DSSP); a multi-service program aimed at cost-effective means for providing maintenance and development of an advanced digital switching system. This digital communications switching system is deployed at the mission control centers of Edwards AFB, Eglin AFB, and China Lake Naval Air Warfare Center (NAWC). Each system provides the test ranges with mission-critical voice communications and Time Space Position Information (TSPI) switching. Through user-friendly Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs), the switch provides exceptional resource management of radios, telephones, user positions, secure communications, radars, trackers, 4-wire Ear & Mouth (E&M) devices, subscriber services, and other equipment. Developed using commercial equipment, such as the Lucent Technologies Digital Access and Cross-Connect System (DACS) II, the digital switch can integrate and interface with the technologies of other test ranges and customers. The DSSP sustaining engineering contract, a $10M contract awarded in 1997, is a multi-service effort in supporting cost effective maintenance and enhancement for the systems’ software and hardware. Eglin and China Lake have agreed to participate in a Digital Switch Working Group (DSWG) to ensure that this configuration management is in place and that all players follow the same system migration path. These ranges and other interested ranges that agree to purchase systems off the contract and participate in the working group will continue to derive benefits by reducing overhead and eliminating the duplication of effort involved in separate endeavors.
    • IRIG-106: A Design Exercise for Digital Communications

      Rice, Michael; Brigham Young University (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      This paper describes a design project which combines the simulation capabilities of the Communications Tool Box in SIMULINK® with the IRIG-106 standard. The design project is part of a senior level digital communications course offered in the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering at Brigham Young University and functions as an introduction to the Telemetering Program at BYU which is funded by the International Foundation for Telemetering.
    • Telemetry Definition and Processing (TDAP): Standardizing Instrumentation and EU Conversion Descriptions

      Campbell, Daniel A.; Reinsmith, Lee; Eglin Air Force Base (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      Telemetry format descriptions and engineering unit conversion calibrations are generated in an assortment of formats and numbering systems on various media. Usually this information comes to the central telemetry receiving/processing system from multiple sources, fragmented and disjointed. As present day flight tests require more and more telemetry parameters to be instrumented and processed, standardization and automation for handling this ever increasing amount of information becomes more and more critical. In response to this need, the Telemetry Definition and Processing (TDAP) system has been developed by the Air Force Development Test Center (AFDTC) Eglin AFB, Florida. TDAP standardizes the format of information required to convert PCM data and MIL-STD-1553 Bus data into engineering units. This includes both the format of the data files and the software necessary to display, output, and extract subsets of data. These standardized files are electronically available for TDAP users to review/update and are then used to automatically set up telemetry acquisition systems. This paper describes how TDAP is used to standardize the development and operational test community’s telemetry data reduction process, both real-time and post-test.

      Harris, Carol; Mascari, Michele; Rice, Kevin; Smith, Jeff; Steedman, John (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      The Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) Conversion Device (ACD) System is based on state-of-the-art ATM technology. The system interfaces between high-rate ECL/RS-422 raw data bitstreams and Synchronous Optical Network (SONET) OC-3 fiber. The SONET OC-3 interface uses ATM Adaptation Layer Type Five (AAL5) format. The system exceeds its 50 Mbps raw data, single stream requirement and provides single stream raw data throughput at rates up to 75 Mbps. With ATM and SONET packaging overhead, this translates into 90 Mbps on the OC-3 fiber. In addition to high-rate throughput, the system provides multiplexing and demultiplexing of multiple stream throughput based on the ATM cell header Virtual Path and Virtual Channel Identifier (VPI/VCI) values. The system is designed with the flexibility to provide between three and six throughput channels. All of which are multiplexed/demultiplexed to and from the same OC-3 interface. Multiple stream cumulative raw data throughput rates of up to 80 Mbps, or 96 Mbps on the fiber, have successfully run.
    • A modular Network Architecture for Lower Cost, High Performance Telemetry Processing

      Schumacher, Gary A.; Terametrix Systems International, Inc (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      There is a continuing need in the aerospace industry for lower cost and more maintainable telemetry data processing systems that can deliver a high level of performance. While systems based on the Intel family of x86 processors and Microsoft operating systems have seen increasing use in lower performance and portable applications, UNIX/VME based systems have been necessary to achieve required performance in higher end, multi-stream applications. Recent developments in the computer industry now promise lower cost alternative to these systems. With currently available technology, it is now possible to provide a powerful distributed processor architecture based entirely on commercial products. The system takes advantage of the latest of Intel Pentium processors, the PCI bus, 100BaseT Fast Ethernet, Microsoft Windows NT, ActiveX technology and NT servers. The architecture offers both current and future cost advantages for test facilities which must support a diverse set of requirements and which must maintain and support systems for many years.

      Kirk, William S.; Kirkpatrick, Shawn; Mussemann, Evan; Inter-Coastal Electronics Inc. (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      Advancing technology continually generates larger quantities of data at increasingly high transfer rates which fuels the need for instrumentation to take up the challenge of efficiently managing the collection of data. This defines the driving force behind the desire for increased channel capacity of PCM data formatters. By incorporating state-of-the-art Digital Signal Processing (DSP) technology coupled with high-performance Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA), Inter-Coastal Electronics has designed the IF-810, a PCM data formatter. The IF-810 allows eight channels of PCM data, one voice channel and an InterRange Instrumentation Group (IRIG)-B channel to be combined and formatted for recording onto the TEAC RX-800 series recorders using a Hi8 8mm video cassette as the recording media. During playback, the IF-810 clocks the PCM data out using a reconstructed version of the input clock. With this unique design, the PCM data and clock outputs are input directly to a decommutator which eliminates the need for costly bit-synchronizers. This paper discusses the integration of the DSP, FPGA and buffering techniques into a low-cost and efficient multi-channel PCM data formatter that accommodates high data rate inputs, all without the need of a bit-synchronizer for decommutation.

      MacDougall, Christopher; Bombardier Flight Test Center (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      During engine and airfield performance testing it is often necessary to acquire weather data at the airfield where the test is being conducted. The airborne data acquisition system (DAS) acquires data associated with flight parameters. A separate system records airport weather conditions. Many times the separate system is an Automated Terminal Information Service (ATIS) or the ground crew relaying wind speed, wind direction and temperature from a weather station. To improve this system, the weather station is designed to acquire and store the data in memory. Utilizing a second DAS that is remote to the airborne DAS poses several problems. First, it is undesirable to have many different data acquisition systems from which to process data. The problem then develops into one of integrating the ground weather DAS with the existing airborne DAS. Other problems of system integrity, compatibility and FCC licensing exist. Complete system integration while maintaining integrity and compatibility is overcome by controlling signal format, flow and timing and is discussed in detail. Further discussion of the issue of transmission is overcome by a technique called spread-spectrum and is used in accordance with FCC rules and regulations.
    • VESSEL TRAFFIC MANAGEMENT SYSTEM A Test Technology Development and Demonstration Project

      Goulet, Dennis A.; McMorrow, Joseph; Roberts, G. Edward; Lynch, Robert (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      The Vessel Traffic Management System is a cooperative effort of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center and the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division, funded by the OSD's Test Technology Development and Demonstration Program. The project is establishing the capability to acquire ship tracking information from numerous sources (GPS and radar target extractors), and combine them into a comprehensive, integrated view of the range safety target area. The consolidated tracking information will be transmitted to range safety vessel personnel and presented on portable display systems to aid in clearing the surveillance area of unauthorized vessels. The communications module is media independent in that positional and image data can be routed via RF modem, cellular phone, Intranet or Internet, singly or in any combination. The software systems for data acquisition, display and control are also platform independent, with the system under development operating under WindowsNT and Windows95. Additionally, the use of Java and VRML tools permits a user to display data (including three dimensional presentations of the data) without requiring the applications software. This system has numerous applications including range safety, commercial vessel traffic management, port authority and services monitoring, and oceanographic data gathering.

      Gross, Jeffrey; Keller, G. E.; ViaSat Inc.; Eglin Air Force Base (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1997-10)
      In this paper, the Miniature Data Acquisition Transceiver System (Mini-DAT), a Type II PC-Card based data acquisition and transceiver system is described. The Mini-DAT was developed by ViaSat and is currently in use at the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) at Eglin AFB. AFRL is investigating the use of this Industrial, Scientific and Medical (ISM) band system for data collection with advanced munitions. The Mini-DAT combines the advantages of PC-Card technology with an off the shelf interfacing and packaging approach to provide a large array of capabilities in a very small package. The system provides everything needed to collect analog, discrete and digital data, process the data and transfer the data in a wireless fashion using the latest license free spread spectrum modulation technology. The advanced design of the Mini-DAT allows for operation in harsh remote environments, collecting data unattended and accessed remotely. A graphical user interface (GUI) is provided via a Windows 3.x and 95 software package that can be easily customized for specific applications. The Mini-DAT provides fast and reliable error-free data transfer over the 2.4GHz ISM communication band. It operates over a shared 80MHz bandwidth, allowing multiple access of a number of portable units operating simultaneously in the same band.