Consortium as a whole

The overall project objective is to boost space-data dissemination and exploitation. The project implementation departs from a specification of requirements and potential improvements in mission scientific return. Therefore, National Observatory of Athens (NOA) is proved an excellent partner, due to its experience in mission participation, let alone their knowledge and broad expertise on scientific analysis. NOA represents the end users, lists a set of missions in which it participates and highlights the aspects for which dissemination and exploitation is expected to increase their scientific work. That said, requirements of real missions and expected improvements are translated into a technological objective, which is proven in this proposal to be satisfied through the construction of Space-Data Routers. DUTH is a leader in Europe in DTN technologies. DUTH consulted ESA in CCSDS DTN activities and undertook major projects in constructing Space Internetworking Testbeds for ESA. DUTH also collaborates with NASA and MIT in the effort of standardizing and evaluating all aspects of DTN and the associated heterogeneity of Space agency policies. Therefore, DUTH undertakes the construction of DTN overlay, as leader. A set of scenarios is defined in accordance with the specified objectives and inline with the scientific objectives and the associated dissemination and exploitation limitations of selected missions. These limitations are contrasted with the new proposed scheme in order to demonstrate the impact of Space-Data Routers. By the same token, Telespazio VEGA, a leader in developing space protocols, including hardware and software components for telemetry ad telecommand, AOS and Proximity-1, undertakes as leader the link-layer design. This design will result in both hardware and software components which will all be integrated in a Linux Box, fully functional and integrated into a functionally-rich Testbed. The testbed forms the Space-Data Router Overlay architecture in a manner that complies with the topology and protocol requirements of selected scenarios. Integration of the protocol stack along with the associated policies and routing strategies will be performed by Space Internetworks, an SME with particular expertise in binding software-hardware components, implementing convergence protocols and integrating various functions into Linux based systems. SI members have also extensive experience in DTN protocols, having collaborated in the past with Space Internetworking projects and DUTH.

In a cross-layer design, security aspects will be exploited and corresponding security mechanisms will be integrated into a space cross-mission application, into DTN overlay and the Domain Name System for the overlay per se. This effort will be led by Plymouth University’s security group, a leading group in the UK with expertise in authentication, integrity and encryption strategies in networked architectures.

Evaluation of the proposed scheme will be conducted in accordance with the scientific objectives. NOA will be responsible for addressing the issue: “What is the expected scientific return from Space-Data routers?”. This includes also an effort to quantify the dissemination and exploitation improvement from the proposed overlay. Since dissemination and exploitation mainly refers to Space research centeres and Academic Institutions, NOA will also undertake the dissemination activities as leader.

From the aforementioned description we highlight some particular advantages of the consortium:

Expertise is clearly demonstrated in all the associated activities. Both DUTH and VEGA participate in the standardization activities of CCSDS and are recognized for their corresponding expertise in Europe and worldwide. SI is a Small Enterprise with very highly-qualified members, most of them with Ph.D in Engineering and further, in topics relevant with the proposal. The company has the opportunity to exploit its potential in a state-of-the-art project, for which their members can demonstrate leading hands-on experience. Plymouth has also a great reputation in security aspects but in addition, it also relates with the Goonhilly Ground Station facility, which it administers jointly with British Telecom.

Furthermore, it is noteworthy that the analogy of Industry and Academia is excellent. A leading Company such as Vega along with a very Small enterprise such as Space Internetworks, a Space Center such as NOA with long expertise and significant ongoing projects, and finally two Academic institutions, all join their forces into an effort to produce a state of the art product which is expected to become a major target of deployment and perhaps further enhancements, in the near future.