StellarStation is a cloud platform that provides satellite operators with the same interface for every ground station in the network regardless of that ground station's internal components and configuration. Once you integrate the StellarStation interface into your operations system, you can access any of the ground stations connected to StellarStation without any additional development.
To achieve this, StellarStation provides scheduler, ground station manager, and data transfer systems. The details of each of these functions are described below.
StellarStation is deployed using the Google Cloud Platform (GCP). StellarStation provides three different interfaces for satellite operators: a GUI that is accessible via a web browser, a Command Line Interface (CLI) that runs locally on your computer, and an Application Programming Interface (API) that can be integrated directly into your application.
All communications between ground stations and StellarStation, and between StellarStation and satellite operation systems are encrypted by TLS and transferred over the public Internet. All the data processed on GCP is also encrypted. All the services of StellarStation are managed by Kubernetes on GCP, meaning we are always running the latest version of operating systems and containers.
The scheduler system in StellarStation offers the following services:
- Pass scheduling up to three weeks ahead
- Pass reservation management (acquisition of the pass list, pass booking, and cancelling)
Pass calculations use two line element (TLE) data that is automatically fetched each hour from the Spacetrack database. A satellite operator can also override the TLE manually if needed. The scheduler uses Orekit, which is also used by projects in the European Space Agency, as its orbit propagation algorithm.
Ground Station Manager
The GS manager sytstem in StellarStation offers the following services:
- Fully automated control of the ground station equipment during a pass
- Providing current status telemetry for each piece of equipment during a pass
The status telemetry includes information such as the current status of demodulation/decoding of the modem and predicted/actual pointing direction of the antenna control unit, for example. You can find more detail in our monitoring API on GitHub.
The Data transfer system in StellarStation offers the following services:
- Real-time bidirectional communication for S-band
- Near real-time communication for X-band
By using this service, your satellite operation system can transmit data to your satellite via any of the ground stations in the network. Data received from the satellite is both streamed to you in real time and stored in an encrypted format in the cloud for later retrieval if needed.