6.3 Alternative Architectures in the NSOSA Study

Wednesday, 10 January 2018: 9:00 AM
Salon H (Hilton) (Austin, Texas)
Mark W. Maier, Aerospace Corporation, Chantilly, VA; and F. W. Gallagher III and K. St. Germain

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has conducted a study, the NOAA Satellite Observing System Architecture (NSOSA) study, to plan for the next generation of weather satellites. This study has been an opportunity to design a modern architecture with no pre-conceived notions regarding instruments, platforms, orbits, etc., but driven by user needs. The NSOSA study team developed and evaluated approximately 100 architecture alternatives, to include partner and commercial contributions that are likely to become available. The process of generating these architecture alternatives had to balance comprehensiveness with depth and adequately explore a complex design space. This paper describes the process used to generate the alternatives in an incremental way, allowing for broad exploration of disparate alternatives in early study cycles and detailed exploration and optimization of the most competitive alternatives in later cycles. The paper outlines the major cases considered, how their performance levels were targeted, and how they were eventually structured in modular cases suitable for follow-on concept studies.
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