NASA SBIR 2005 Solicitation


SUBTOPIC TITLE:Intelligent Operations Systems
PROPOSAL TITLE:Intelligent, Semi-Automated Procedure Aid (ISAPA) for ISS Flight Control

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Stottler Henke Associates, Inc.
951 Mariner's Island Blvd., Suite 360
San Mateo, CA 94404-2627
(650) 931-2700

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Richard   Stottler
951 Mariner's Island Blvd., Ste. 360
San Mateo, CA  94404-2627
(650) 931-2700

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
We propose to develop the Intelligent, Semi-Automated Procedure Aid (ISAPA) intended for use by International Space Station (ISS) ground controllers to increase the efficiency and safety of flight operations while reducing costs for NASA. ISAPA is innovative in that it is centered on a "person-in-the-loop" approach to automation. While ISAPA executes procedures, it asks the user for confirmations, decisions and allows the user to easily override. To increase situational awareness, the aid clearly presents, through notifications and advanced visualizations, what is being performed. The second major innovation is ISAPA's intuitive authoring tool which enables controllers (without programming skills) to build new and modify existing semi-automated procedures using drag-and-drop graphical widgets. As space station construction progresses and procedures change, authoring utilities allow the straightforward updating of procedures. ISAPA also supports gradual procedure automation, allowing flight controllers to migrate a manual procedure towards automation as confidence is gained. The system will integrate with existing mission control center systems, specifically: "Thin Layer" for sending commands, "Information Sharing Protocol" for receiving telemetry, and use official formats, such as "PRL", for persisting procedure data. ISAPA will also include a simulator to assist in the validation process of procedures.

During Phase I, Stottler Henke developed a prototype of the ISAPA execution tool, authoring tool and simulation tools while constructing two sample procedures based on real-life controller procedures. During Phase II, Stottler Henke will develop a full ISAPA system ready for integration into the ISS MCC. Special emphasis will be placed on compliance with NASA ground console software certification.

ISAPA technologies from the Technology Taxonomy are Autonomous Reasoning/Artificial Intelligence and Human-Computer Interfaces from the Information section.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed technology will help NASA create and use intelligent job aids that help ground controllers perform ISS complex procedures more quickly, with fewer errors. As the technology is accepted, ISAPA could be applied to other NASA domains: it can help crews carry out a wide range of procedural tasks such as payload operations; medical operations; and equipment maintenance, diagnosis, and repair. Its extensible architecture will enable integration of application-specific software to support gradual or immediate procedure automation of diverse tasks.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed technology will also be targeted toward satellite operations, Naval ship operations, maintenance, and damage control and could also be used by corporations to help their employees, customers, suppliers, value-added resellers, and other partner companies carry out procedural tasks such as performing common tasks using software or hardware products or manufacturing equipment; and maintaining, diagnosing and repairing equipment.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Autonomous Reasoning/Artificial Intelligence
Computer System Architectures
Human-Computer Interfaces
Software Development Environments
Software Tools for Distributed Analysis and Simulation

Form Printed on 07-25-06 17:04