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5. Hardware Architecture

This section describes the hardware architecture. To assign functions to processor platforms, including Front End Processors (FEPs), workstations, and servers, the applications are categorized into the following two classes:

* Contact applications - Telemetry, Commanding, and Ground System Status (GSS) Processing

* Planning applications - Orbit, Attitude, and Mission Planning.

Here, GSS processing (a subfunction of Resource Management) is included because, at nominal telemetry and commanding rates, this process is significant. At high rates the processing requirements associated with GSS processing are relatively small.

For each class, a summary is presented of key performance drivers and a nominal distribution of functionality among FEP, workstation, or server platforms. Detailed performance analysis results are included in the functional area appendices. These analyses attempt to quantify the expected data processing load, data storage needs, and data access timing requirements of the functional areas.

In addition, a very general network topology is presented. This points out a few important features that must be included for reasons of performance, reliability, or maintainability. The topology is not sized for any particular application, but an attempt is made to indicate the means by which the architecture can be scaled to accommodate more (or fewer) vehicles within a single ground system.