Automated testing system for technical diagnostics of spacecraft power supply systems

Aeronautical and Space-Rocket Engineering

Control and testing of flying vehicles and their systems


Ogloblin D. V.1*, Gorelov A. D.1**, Voroshilin A. P.2***, Zueva K. S.3****

1. Lavochkin Research and Production Association, NPO Lavochkin, 24, Leningradskay str., Khimki, Moscow region, 141400, Russia
2. Continental - Moscow branch, 12, Davydkovskaya str., Moscow, 121352, Russia
3. Mobile TeleSystems, 15, Zemledelcheskii per., Moscow, 119121, Russia



One of the urgent tasks at present consists in time reduction of flying vehicle launch preparation through introduction of new technologies, equipment and various kinds of tests based on computational experiments.

One of the most expensive types of aircraft is a spacecraft for various missions and tasks in the near-earth space and interplanetary flights. The main system of a spacecraft is the power supply system. Stringent requirements on external impact stability, and operability maintenance in emergency situations, since its failure results in the spacecraft loss. The power supply system preparation and testing is a major part of the testing program and it is performed employing rather labor-intensive methods.

One of the most interesting objects for the test complex optimization are the spacecraft for astronomical observations, as they present a set of a large number of complex technical devices for various purposes and control systems. Such aircraft requires a special approach to ensuring the quality of various electrical systems tests, as well as control and monitoring systems.

It is important to ensure uninterrupted power supply of the onboard service and scientific equipment for the timely data obtaining during the mission. Thus, the task of rapid and high-quality electrical tests performing of such spacecraft is of paramount importance.

The following core systems are being subjected to comprehensive electrical testing: the onboard radio telemetry system, onboard control system, propulsion system, the solar panels orientation system, power system, electrification control system.

Besides scientific equipment, these systems form the basis of almost any spacecraft. Due to the large number of systems subjected to electrical checks, the issue of the electrical tests time reduction, while preserving their quality (guaranteed reliability level of the systems) is relevant. It is necessary to determine the level of reliability and the number of tests based on the system model.

This above said problem can be solved by optimizing the measurement devices' number and functional characteristics, as well as application of automated measurement systems (AIC) for processing a large number of parameters (with account for specifics of electrical tests). This solution allows optimize the testing process, while reducing herewith the number of employed measuring equipment and the test program cost.

The upgraded AIC version allows combine system data into one subsystem of the power bus monitor. It also ensures centralized output of the test data to the Central computer, reducing the number of additional jobs, and simplifying the operators work.

The final layout option has a more optimized build structure. The structural diagram of the modernized automated testing system for electrical testing is presented.

Application of the reliability computation model allowed estimate the number of necessary checks, and the proposed system ensured the electrical tests duration reduction by 30%.

Implementation this complex of has increased the voltage, current and resistance parameters measurements accuracy by 0.01%.

This set allows define the parameters of voltage, as well as the leakage current and the signal occurrence at a specified time instant. This allows localize and fix the problem with the power supply during the test.

The software has a flexible customizable interface that allows quickly respond to changes and emergencies.

The proposed complex can be employed for spacecraft testing and, first of all, telecommunication satellites for various purposes based on of the “Navigator” platform. As examples of products using this platform, we can cite the spacecraft of the Arctic family, Electro and Spectrum.


satellites testing, satellite power supply system, insulation resistance control, satellite systems reliability, satellite electrical systems


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