The SED Payload Configuration Tool (PCT) is an offline planning tool designed for use by payload engineers/satellite operators for managing the configuration of a transparent multi-beam satellite communications payload. The PCT provides a graphical user interface that models the connectivities of the payload channels and beams, including the major payload components, switch positions, gain settings, and redundancy configurations.
The PCT includes a connectivity analysis module that is used to evaluate alternative payload configurations for varying operational scenarios (i.e., payload device failure, revised frequency plans). Given a user-entered operational scenario, the analysis module ranks alternative connectivities according to a scoring function and presents the results on the PCT user interface. The scoring function can consider device failures, path loss, and user-entered ranking factors such as the number of disrupted busy paths, the number of switch position changes, and the number of switches a path crosses.
Given the payload connectivity specifications and block diagrams of a spacecraft payload, SED engineering services prepares and configures the payload models and mimic displays included in the deliverable PCT software. Optionally, the PCT software can be customized to support an interface to the Satellite Control Center Real-time System (RTS). This option provides functionality for generating RTS-compatible procedure set files for upload to the RTS, and for retrieving the current payload configuration from telemetry data queried from the RTS.