Elucidation and Analysis of Specification Patterns
in Aerospace System Telemetry

Zachary Luppen, Michael Jacks, Nathan Baughman, Muhamed Stilic, Ryan Nasers, Benjamin Hertz, James Cutler, Dae-Young Lee, and Kristin Yvonne Rozier

This webpage contains research artifacts from "Elucidation and Analysis of Specification Patterns
in Aerospace System Telemetry"
by Z. Luppen, M. Jacks, N. Baughman, M. Stilic, R. Nasers, B. Hertz, J. W. Cutler, D. Y. Lee, K. Y. Rozier

Automation Levels

In a nutshell, the automation level is a metric used to describe how easily a computer can create a specification automatically. Generally, this doesn’t mean difficulty as in the complexity of a given specification but rather whether or not an understanding of the system is required or documentation is missing. This metric we used comes in three stages as described below.

Level 1 easily automatable - No human input required

This is the lowest level on our scale and represents the easiest of all specifications written. For example, a temperature sensor has a manufactures authorized safe range that is either set by the engineers or the factory. This upper and lower limit is generally described in detail within the parts documentation. A computer could easily pull this information and elicit a specification using these boundaries for a RNG specification. A RAT specification can also be created using this same data as it is reasonable to assume the parts collection value should never change more than the magnitude of the entire operating range. A great example of this is the temperature specifications within GRIFEX’s FCPU.

We know the temperature range from the documentation that the FCPU should always be between -55 and 130 degrees celsius Computer takes this value and writes the following specifications...

RNG: G[0,M] (a0&a1) where a0: FCPU TEMP 0 >= -55, a1: FCPU TEMP 0 <= 130

RAT: G[0,M] (a0(i)) where a0(i): (abs(FCPU TEMP 0[i-1] - FCPU TEMP 0[i])) <= 185

Level 2 indicates moderate difficulty in automation - Average human input required

Specifications here more often than not are given this rating because documentation is missing and/or an assumption had to be made. A reasonable range can be given to a certain variable but not guaranteed defined values verified by documentation. For example, if the temperature onboard a satellite did not have any manufacturer safe ranges then one could assume the sensor could not read absolute zero or temperatures exceeding that of the surface of the sun. Thus a general range is born and the subsequent RNG and RAT specifications are created.

Level 3 is very hard to automate if at all - 100% human input required

Level three specification are made completely by human as the documentation may not exist or other issues have emerged preventing the obvious solution from being the correct one. In a few of the specifications, the documentation in fact contradicted what was considered normal telemetry, R2U2 would flag every single collection of data since the crafts creation if the documentation was to be followed. Wether this is a problem with the documentation or something else, interpretation and human input is required to fully create the specification. Here is an example of the MARINA experiment onboard GRIFEX that sends a value of 0 in telemetry for a large portion of it’s lifespan. The documentation states that a 0 should not exist and therefore the computer would not realize that 0 is in fact normal in aerospace System Telemetry