Sonalysts Expands Capabilities of the Air Force Standard Space Trainer

Posted on 09/02/2013

Sonalysts, Inc. of Waterford, CT, recently installed Release 1.0 of the Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) simulation in the Standard Space Trainer (SST) labs at the 533rd Training Squadron, Vandenberg AFB, and the 50th Space Wing, Schriever AFB.  The simulation capabilities provided by Release 1.0 support crew and operator training in ground operations and vehicle support for WGS satellites. 

The WGS training system is a Mission-Specific Vendor Plug-in (MSVP), which is a training simulation application that is launched from the SST Architecture.  The SST Architecture enables space system trainers to be built on a personal computer-based, commercial off-the-shelf hardware solution, without reliance on the actual hardware or software of the space system.  Included in the SST Architecture is a Software Development Kit package to allow development of new training systems that will be deployed from the same SST Architecture.  

Upgrades to the SST Architecture and the Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS) MSVP (already resident in the SST training labs) were also installed, making the 533rd and 50th the first sites where MSVPs for two different satellite systems are being deployed from the SST Architecture within a single training lab.  

WGS Release 2.0 is scheduled for installation at the 533rd and 50th later this year. This release, in conjunction with additional modifications to the SST Architecture and DSCS MSVP, will mark an important milestone in satellite operator training.  Specifically, the associated SST upgrades will provide instructors, for the first time, the ability to link training sessions between different MSVPs and facilitate the cross-sharing of data in real-time in the same training exercise - allowing multiple crews to train interdependently. 

This work was performed under a Small Business Innovation Research Phase 3 contract with the Department of the Air Force, Headquarters, Space and Missile Systems Center, Los Angeles Air Force Base, California totaling over $20 million.  The WGS development effort is supported by approximately 24 software engineers, software testers, training specialists, and Air Force subject-matter experts in Waterford, CT and Colorado Springs, CO.