• International Telemetering Conference Proceedings, Volume 49 (2013)

      Unknown author (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
    • Telemetry and Command Link for University Mars Rover Vehicle

      Kosbar, Kurt; Hobbs, Jed; Meye, Mellissa; Trapp, Brad; Ronimous, Stefan; Ayerra, Irati; Missouri University of Science and Technology (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      This paper describes a telemetry and command communication link used as part of a rover entered in the University Mars Rover competition. The link is capable of transmitting multiple real time video streams, along with other telemetry data from a rover to a base station approximately one kilometer away, under non-line-of-sight conditions. Low data rate commands are sent to the rover, to control its movement. To simulate conditions on Mars, the link cannot use existing cellular or satellite communication infrastructure. The data link uses the 70 cm Amateur Radio band for transmission in both directions.
    • Analysis of a Systems Engineering Based Approach to the University Rover Challenge

      Kosbar, Kurt; Jetter, Joshua; Missouri University of Science and Technology (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      The University Rover Challenge is a competition to build a scaled down version of a next-generation Mars rover. This paper describes the comprehensive systems engineering based approached used by the Missouri S&T Mars Rover Design Team. This student run, interdisciplinary team of approximately 50 students followed a comprehensive systems-engineering based approach to the conceptualization, design, implementation, test and evaluation of the project. This has allowed students to leverage their discipline specific expertise, while simultaneously facilitating the cross-disciplinary communication which is essential to the successful completion of the project. The team's performance in the competition will provide metrics to analyze the efficacy of this organization and approach.
    • Design and Semi-Autonomous Control of a 6-Axis Robotic Arm Used in a Remote Sensing Application

      Kosbar, Kurt; Sullivan, John; Coffman, Amy; Roberds, Benjamin; Roberts, Jordan; Missouri University of Science and Technology (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      This paper describes the sensor and actuator package for a 6-axis articulated arm which is part of a robotic vehicle entered in the Mars Rover Challenge competition. The robot is intended to perform some of the same duties as a human, but be remotely controlled. It uses an articulated arm for many of these duties. Because of the large number of degrees of freedom, it would be tedious to control each joint individually. A system was developed to measure the state of each joint, transmit this information back to a base station, and semi-autonomously control the arm.
    • Design of an Autonomous Robot for Indoor Navigation

      Kosbar, Kurt; McConnell, Michael; Chionuma, Daniel; Wright, Jordan; Brandt, Jordan; Zhe, Liu; Missouri University of Science and Technology (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      This paper describes the design and implementation of an autonomous robot to navigate indoors to a specified target using an inexpensive commercial off the shelf USB camera and processor running an imbedded Linux system. The robot identifies waypoints to aid in navigation, which in our case consists of a series of quick response (QR) codes. Using a 1080p USB camera, the robot could successfully identify waypoints at a distance of over 4 meters, and navigate at a rate of 50 cm/sec.
    • Machine Vision and Autonomous Integration Into an Unmanned Aircraft System

      Dianics, James; Fasel, Hermann F.; Marcellin, Michael W.; Van Horne, Chris; University of Arizona (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      The University of Arizona's Aerial Robotics Club (ARC) sponsors the development of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) able to compete in the annual Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) Seafarer Chapter Student Unmanned Aerial Systems competition. Modern programming frameworks are utilized to develop a robust distributed imagery and telemetry pipeline as a backend for a mission operator user interface. This paper discusses the design changes made for the 2013 AUVSI competition including integrating low-latency first-person view, updates to the distributed task backend, and incremental and asynchronous updates the operator's user interface for real-time data analysis.
    • The BCT-302 1553 Test Bus Card

      Natale, Louis; Wierzbicki, Craig; Lockheed Martin Aeronautics; Telectronics Technology Corporation (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      The desire to control an LRU and/or MIL-STD 1760 store via an independent 1553 stream on current weapon platforms created the need for the development of the BCT-302 1553 Test Bus Card. This solution solves the issues of integration without the need to perform an aircraft OFP change. The BCT- 302 is a customized MIL-STD-1553 card for use in Teletronics Technology Corporation, (TTC), Airborne Instrumentation Multiplexer (AIM) and High-Speed Avionics Data Acquisition Unit (HSAVDAU) products. The BCT-302 card consists of two redundant MIL-STD-1553 ports. Each port is independently configurable by the AIM/HSAVDAU host processor to function as a Bus Controller (BC), Remote Terminal (RT) or Bus Monitor (BM). The system is capable of cherry picking parameters from any 1553 bus and retransmitting assembled messages to a weapon and/or an LRU in a 1553 format. This paper describes the design requirements of the BCT card and how those requirements were met during an AIM-9X launch on an F-22.
    • Field Programmable Gate Array Application for Decoding IRIG-B Time Code

      Brown, Jarrod P.; Eglin Air Force Base (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      A field programmable gate array (FPGA) is used to decode Inter-Range Instrumentation Group (IRIG) time code for a PC-based Time-Space-Position Information (TSPI) acquisition. The FPGA architecture can latch time via an external event trigger or a programmable periodic internal event. By syncing time with an external IRIG Group Type B (IRIG-B) signal and using an 8 megahertz (MHz) internal clock, captured time has 125 nanosecond (ns) precision. A Range Instrumentation Control System (RICS) application utilizing the FPGA design to capture IRIG time is presented and test results show matching time accuracy when compared to commercial IRIG time capture hardware components.
    • Future of Flash

      Budd, Chris; SMART High Reliability Solutions, Inc. (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      Solid-State Drives (SSDs) are an enabling technology for data recorders. SSDs can survive where Hard-Disk Drives (HDDs) cannot. SSDs deliver better performance with lower power consumption than HDDs. However, the end of Single-Level Cell (SLC) NAND flash may be near; Multi-Level Cell (MLC) NAND flash soon may be the only choice for industrial applications. System designers have two distinct concerns before implementing SSDs: 1. Cost: MLC NAND flash makes SSDs as affordable as HDDs 2. Endurance: SSDs are reliable and endurance assured with today's controller technology SSDs are leading the charge in transforming data storage in several applications, telemetry included.
    • Remote Imaging System Acquisition (RISA) Space Environment Multispectral Imager

      Grubbs, Elmer; Pine, Gerald; Gustafson, Joshua; Kay, John; Pilar, Janelle; Rojas, Rafael; Sylvester, Lance; Trojahn, Rachel; NASA Johnson Space Center (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      The RISA imaging team is tasked to research, develop, implement, and test a multispectral imaging system capable of supporting multiple NASA exploration objectives. This year's NASA team is responsible for characterizing the newly implemented liquid lens, implementing a charging circuit complete with rechargeable batteries and a solar panel array, and redesigning the already developed wireless data transmission system. The charging circuit will be fully designed by our electrical engineering team using Gallium Arsenide solar panels provided by AZUR SPACE Solar Power. The implementation of this solar panel array will enable the final system to be completely independent of any power consumption from the spacecraft. The wireless data transmission system will be redesigned to utilize a compression technique as opposed to entire-image compression, as the previous system had implemented. This edit, in conjunction with an interfacing bypass through hardwiring of the image sensor to the Gumstix COM, will drastically increase the data transmission rate. These modifications will therefore increase the rate at which NASA can send and receive data and/or the communication of rate of the camera commands through the designed GUI. As a result of new mission objectives and requirements associated with new age space vehicles, little physical capacity is available, especially compared to past NASA Space Shuttles. Employing a multi-purpose imaging system alleviates the need of manifesting multiple individual imagers by incorporating the numerous desired functions into one system. The final version of the imager, which is expected to be completed in follow-up work, is intended to be flight ready and will be used in the crew cabin, on the exterior of NASA vehicles, and on Lunar and other planetary surfaces. For this year's imager, the preliminary design review was broken down into four sections: the battery, the solar panel, the charging circuit, and wireless hardware. In each of these sections, multiple designs were considered, but the charging circuit and wireless system were decided to be custom designed by the team.
    • Validation for Visually lossless Compression of Stereo Images

      Marcellin, Michael W.; Bilgin, Ali; Feng, Hsin-Chang; University of Arizona (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      This paper described the details of subjective validation for visually lossless compression of stereoscopic 3 dimensional (3D) images. The subjective testing method employed in this work is adapted from methods used previously for visually lossless compression of 2 dimensional (2D) images. Confidence intervals on the correct response rate obtained from the subjective validation of compressed stereo pairs provide reliable evidence to indicate that the compressed stereo pairs are visually lossless.
    • Transitioning from NTSC to HD Digital Video Vol. 2

      Hightower, Paul; Instrumentation Technology Systems (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      In our first installment, analog and HD video terms were compared. It was shown that resolution is three-dimensional in HD. High HD data rates force the use of video compression in order to transport video. Compression compromises video detail and introduces latency. Latency affects the overlay of time critical measurements. It is therefore important to time stamp at the source. In this volume, the focus is on the key regions of the HD video frame and metadata. SMPTE specifications are the foundation on which MISB builds its use of metadata. It will be shown that only two KLV packets can hold all TSPI and calibration data with frame-by-frame updates. This capacity is new in HD. Metadata is permanently merged with images and the time that both were collected. We show how employing the KLV metadata packet can result in a single video record where picture taking are all in lockstep. Using KLV metadata enables one to record clean video while retaining the ability to place crosshairs and data during playback.
    • Fast On-Board Tracking System for External Stores Separation

      Leite, Nelson Paiva Oliveira; Guarino de Vasconcelos, Luiz Eduardo; Kusomoto, André Yoshimi; Instituto de Pesquisas e Ensaios em Voo (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      External stores separation campaign is very risky therefore its preparation presents a big technical challenge for the instrumentation group. Determination of store trajectory requires the integration of two hi-speed hi-resolution video cameras into FTI. Link bandwidth precludes the development of a real-time application to be used at the Ground Telemetry System (GTS) for separation validation. To improve efficiency IPEV, with FINEP funding, is developing a system where the separation trajectory is computed on-board and in real-time. Computed parameters are merged into FTI to be processed into GTS and compared to the estimated trajectory. The proposed architecture is presented and discussed.
    • PTPV1 and PTPV2 Translation in FTI Systems

      Lefevre, D.; Cranley, N.; Holmeide, Ø.; Zodiac Data Systems; Ontime Networks AS (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      A Flight Test Instrumentation (FTI) system may consist of equipment that either supports PTPv1 (IEEE 1588 Std 2002) or PTPv2 (IEEE 1588 Std 2008). The challenge in such time distributed system is the poor compatibility between the two PTP protocol versions. This paper describes how to combine the PTP versions in the same network with minimum or no manual configuration.
    • An Application of Sync Time Division Multiplexing in Telemetry System

      Lu, Chun; Yan, Yihong; Song, Jian; Beijing Zoweetech Ltd.; China Flight Test Establishment (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      High speed real-time data transportation is most important for telemetry systems, especially for large-scale distributed systems. This paper introduces a STDM (Sync Time Division Multiplexing) network structure for data transportation between devices in telemetry systems. The data in these systems is transported through virtual channels between devices. In addition, a proper frame format is designed based on PCM format to meet the needs of synchronization and real-time transportation in large-scale distributed telemetry systems.
    • Optimal Location for a Mobile Base Station in a Complex Network

      Moazzami, Farzad; Dean, Richard; Astatke, Yacob; Morgan State University (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      The focus of this work is the development of a complete network architecture to enhance telemetry performance using a mobile base station (MBS). The present study proposes a means of enabling both the mobile ad-hoc network (MANET) and a cellular network to operate simultaneously within the same spectrum. In this paper the application of a modified k-means clustering to organize several hundred TAs in a complex network environment is presented. A mobile base station is added to the network to locate the congested area and support the network but positioning itself in the mixed network environment. A scenario with two base stations (one mobile and one stationary) is simulated and results are presented. It is observed that use of an additional mobile base station could greatly increase the quality of communication by providing uniform distribution of node traffic and interference across the clusters in a complex telemetry environment with several hundred TAs.
    • Using Chapter 10 User Datagram Protocol (UDP) Streaming and Ethernet Technologies to Support Ground-Based Aircraft Testing

      Diehl, Michael; Kuipers, Steven; Swain, Jason; Wilcox, Tab; U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      During a recent U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground (YPG) ground test, an unexpected change in test location resulted in the implementation of an innovative ad hoc network solution to complete the planned test matrix. The original plan was to use an aircraft ground test facility; however, safety requirements resulted in the aircraft being placed 50 meters away from the facility. This distance was too great to use the existing connections; consequently, data collection and analysis were adversely affected until this time expedient solution was implemented.
    • Considerations for IP-Based Range Architectures

      Kovach, Bob; Superior Access Solutions, Inc. (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      In the past several years there has been a good amount of effort expended in migrating telemetry streams to IP-based infrastructure, especially in the area of ground-based transport. This has yielded a number of benefits, from leveraging the properties of IP transport to enable multicast transport, to the integration of the wide number of COTS equipment that also is IP-based, such as digital video encoder/decoders into range networks. This paper will provide a model for identifying areas to accelerate the integration of IP-based assets into the range infrastructure at the application level. In particular the integration of metadata between the telemetry and video application interfaces will be explored.
    • Development of a Digital Potentiometer Circuit for Digital Compensation of Frequency and Temperature Variations of Kvco to Provide Reprogramming of the Transmitter RF Center Frequency in the Field

      Oder, Stephen; St. Gelais, Robert; Caron, Peter; Bajgot, Douglas; Cobham Electronic Systems (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      Cobham Electronic Systems, Inc. has developed a digital potentiometer circuit to allow for digital compensation of frequency and temperature variations in the VCO/PLL frequency control loop of a telemetry transmitter. The ability to reprogram the RF center frequency of a telemetry transmitter is a useful feature and is required on many telemetry programs. When setting the frequency modulation deviation (FM Modulation Index) of a telemetry transmitter, the exact setting will change with RF center frequency due to the variation of the transfer function of the VCO (Kvco). Typically, a resistor divider is used to set the frequency modulation deviation level by setting the output data signal amplitude. However, since Kvco varies with respect to RF center frequency, a method of adjusting frequency modulation deviation for each frequency setting is required. The shunt resistor in the resistor divider is replaced with a digital potentiometer to provide the necessary adjustment, using the on-board microprocessor to store a look-up table of settings versus frequency. A key feature of the digital potentiometer circuit is a method to increase the frequency bandwidth of the potentiometer. Digital potentiometers typically have frequency bandwidths measured in kiloHertz to MegaHertz, which limits their use in setting the frequency modulation deviation of high data rate telemetry transmitters. The circuit consists of a 256 position digital potentiometer and several resistors that are used to adjust the slope of the resistance vs. digital code curve and to translate the curve up and down along the Y-Axis. Adding external resistors to the digital potentiometer helps to increase the frequency bandwidth of the digital potentiometer. The selection of the maximum resistance range of the digital potentiometer is also important, as the potentiometer bandwidth is greater when a small portion of the total resistance is used. This paper will explore various methods of increasing the effective bandwidth of a digital potentiometer, with the goal of making them suitable for use in dynamically setting the frequency modulation deviation via digital control.
    • combined Modulation and Error Correction Decoder for TDMR Using Generalized Belief Propagation

      Vasić, Bane; Khatami, Mehrdad; University of Arizona (International Foundation for Telemetering, 2013-10)
      Constrained codes also known as modulation codes are a key component in the digital magnetic recording systems. The constrained codes forbid particular input data patterns which lead to some of the dominant error events or higher media noise. In data recording systems, a concatenated approach toward the constrained code and error-correcting code (ECC) is typically used and the decoding is done independently. In this paper, we show the improvement in combining the decoding of the constrained code and the ECC using generalized belief propagation (GBP) algorithm. We consider the performance of a combined modulation constraints and the ECC on a binary symmetric channel (BSC). We show that combining demodulation and decoding results in a superior performance compared to concatenated schemes. Furthermore, we compute the capacity of the joint ECC and modulation codes for 1-D and 2-D constraints.