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Next Generation Very High Throughput Satellites (VHTS) are now being deployed and provide capability to maximize the use of spectrum resources while offering high quality services at very competitive prices.
VHTS are transforming the industry in various aspects. After the innovation of on-board equipment, ground equipment , as MCC, need to keep the innovation pace.
As payloads are more and more complex and flexible, their management system becomes a key issue.
SpaceOps, TAS MCC Product Line, is a comprehensive Satellite management solution based on a modular architecture allowing to propose an integrated solution unifying all or parts of the functions of the needed mission segment :
This ESA cofounded project allows the development of some SpaceOps critical features,
To occupy a dominant position on the Satcom market, Thales Alenia Space needs to keep on improving its MCC product line, expanding its functions accordingly to Satcom Operators expectations and constantly innovating to differentiate from competitors.
Thales Alenia Space objectives are extremely ambitious, with the development of some SpaceOps major and complex features (satellite fleet, flexibility, mobility, Q/V band and site diversity, dynamic resources management…) to enhance this product line and improve customer experience.
But these evolutions face the double challenge of requiring to be developed and made available at the right time but also with the right features to meet the market demand at best.
SpaceOps is designed, to ease Satcom operations, which are becoming more and more complex with the increasing complexity of the new flexible and highly capacitive Telecom Payloads.
It’s main expected benefits for Satcom Operators are:
In order to anticipate at best market evolution, the SpaceOps roadmap is organized according to 4 main axis:
The current project aims at developing features for the first of these axis (VHTS, flexibility, site diversity) for which TAS target a market availability by 2 to 3 years.
Thales Alenia Space, relying on its end-to-end system design experience, aims at developing and validating the following new features for its SpaceOps product:
SpaceOps supports efficiently payload operations with different functionalities:
The following figure illustrates SpaceOps position in the landscape of a complex satellite system including several satellites, allowing to manage commercial satellites resources and implementing several user segments.
The overall product development approach is performed according to an iterative and agile process. It avoids the tunnel effect frequently observed in complex software products development.
The development lifecycle relies on the following sequence :
The project is currently right in the middle of its incubation phase where all the User Requirements and Use Cases identified to fit at best commercial market needs are being processed to orient the new features developments and prioritise them.
Aside these engineering and development scheduling activities, an IVV pull strategy is also under definition.