A new open access research article authored by Brian Chell, Matthew J. LeVine, Leigha Capra, Jerry J. Sellers, and Paul Grogan appears in Systems Engineering today.
The New Observing Strategies Testbed (NOS-T) is a digital engineering environment for enabling distributed space mission (DSM) technology demonstrations. Its event-driven architecture enables users to orchestrate DSM test campaigns by developing applications that communicate state changes via messages. NOS-T is motivated by requirements such as geographical distribution, cross-boundary participation, wide applicability, and usability that make it unique in this field. This article introduces NOS-T and describes its architecture in the context of an example DSM test suite, FireSat+. The scalability of NOS-T is demonstrated with a performance assessment of its capabilities under a stress test of high message frequency and payload size, which are both related to the complexity of potential user-generated test cases. Results show that message periodicity has no significant effect on median delay time over the ranges sampled; however, the message payload size induces linear growth in median delay time of approximately 1.5 ms per kB. Future NOS-T applications can adjust the execution time scaling factor and message payload size to match operational constraints on allowable delay.