ECE 419: Senior Design Andrew Downs Rachel Baca December 7, 2011

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ECE 419: Senior Design

Andrew Downs

Rachel Baca

December 7, 2011



Misty Crown: Mentor/Sponsor



William
Zortman
:
Technical Advisor
from
Sandia
Labs



Andrew Downs: Student



Rachel Baca: Student




AFRL BEL: Air Force Research Laboratory
Battlespace

Environment Laboratory


Studies space weather and other space phenomena


Space weather can cause damage to power grids
and electrical equipment on earth


Can cause damage to near earth satellites such as
ground to space communication links


Currently, there is no way of accessing the needed space
weather information that is spread across various websites
simultaneously from within one program


Difficulty graphing and plotting information as well as being
able to display in human
-
readable format


Funding is not extensive which means current AFRL hardware
needs to be taken advantage resulting in software that needs
to be open source



Create software for AFRL that is eventually going to be used
to train space weather forecasters


Implement a way to pull space weather information from the
various websites simultaneously through a simple user
interface


Based upon user specified constraints, the program needs to
be able to graph the needed information from a source


Allows experience in creating our own software


Gain knowledge into the software design process


Gain factual knowledge on what exactly entails “space
weather” and how it can potentially affect us


Learn a completely new scripting language in Python


Further our knowledge of plotting and graphing of
information through a different outlet

which in this case is
space weather


NOAA National Geophysical Data Center


NOAA: National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration


Project Goal:


Need to retrieve Sun, solar activity and upper
atmosphere data


STEREO: Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory


Provides two space
-
based observatory viewpoints
of Earth in order to see the structure and
evolution of solar storms


Project Goal:


Provide visual representations of this data
within the program


SDO: Solar Dynamics Observatory


Is the first mission to be launched for NASA’s
Living With a Star (LWS) Program, a program
designed to understand the causes of solar
variability and its impact on Earth.


Project Goal:


Provide visual representations of this data
within the program


Software will be run on Linux
-
based systems


Code will be Python
-
based


Code will be open source


User’s manual


Open
-
sourced, Linux and Python
-
based space
weather interpretation software


Neither of us have worked with the Python
scripting language


Some of the files that we will be dealing with are
often large in size and contain large amounts of
numerical data that need to be interpreted
appropriately


The software needs to be open source and also run
under a Linux machine which is not as easily
available to us as students




Continue training of knowledge around Python
programming and the interpretation of FITS and
HDF files through Python


Continue implementation of visuals from NASA’s
source websites


Continue work on graphical user interface that
allows for ease
-
of
-
use


Implement constraint
-
based graphing into
program


After a prototype is made, extensive testing of
available files needs to be done in order to check
for correct functionality


Finish implementing interpretation of FITS
and HDF file into software by end of
December


Create a working prototype by end of January


Testing of software and confirmation of
requirements in subsequent months