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Green Software for Space Control Mission

The intensive usage of computational resources in the aerospace sector is the key for planning, execution and maintenance of their missions. In this sector, there are two software components that require more energy: the first is the module which deals directly with the communications from/to the satellites, makes the necessary calculations (accomplished on ground), and sends back to the satellite the response as commands/instructions. The second module is the software responsible for the posterior data processing and analysis (post-processing), crucial to the scientific community, because it is in this step that the raw data collected in the missions becomes readable to be used by scientific communities to draw conclusions.

In previous studies, scientists concluded that nearly 90% of the energy consumption in a computer system comes from software execution. As we can imagine, an entity such as the European Space Agency (ESA) has several computer systems running 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, which causes it to consume as much energy as a small town. Therefore, reducing this huge energy consumption is key. Using only software, the GreenSSCM (Green Software for Space Control Mission) project aims at optimising software components for this sector in order to significantly reduce energy consumption.

Using VisionSpace Technologies's wide experience in the aerospace sector, specifically due to its partnerships with ESA, we are developing this product so that, in the short term, it can be extended to the entire aerospace sector. In the middle term, this project may also be extended to other industries with similar energy issues, such as big data centres, where the energy consumed by running software and storage subsystems has a strong financial and environmental negative impact.

Starting Date: September 1, 2013

Project team: João Alexandre Saraiva, António Nestor Ribeiro and Victor Francisco Fontes

Official Website: GreenSSCM



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