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Center Independent Research & Development: GSFC IRAD

Spacecraft on a Chip Development

Completed Technology Project

Project Description

Spacecraft on a Chip Development

This project lays the groundwork for the future development of a spacecraft on a chip implementation (SCOC), which would combine the electronics for multiple spacecraft functions onto a single device, or as few devices as practical.

System on a chip is a method to increase engineering efficiency. State of the art components are increasing in gate count as expected according to Moore's law. In the past, a single engineer could write all of the code that would be placed into a smaller programmable component. As component density has increased, it now typically takes several engineers to develop a single chip. In the near future, design modularity and design reuse will be required to maintain engineering efficiency. System on a chip allows NASA to develop or buy a library of functions which can be stitched together using a common interconnect bus. This promotes code reuse and greatly increases the speed at which a large, complex design can be developed. The direct benefits are efficiency and remaining competitive. This design methodology paves the way for the final goal of developing a complete spacecraft on a chip. The goal of this project is to lay the key groundwork for being able to build a complete spacecraft on a chip.

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Anticipated Benefits

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