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BurstCube: Instrument Flight Firmware

Presentation #108.36 in the session “Missions and Instruments (Poster)”.

Published onApr 01, 2022
BurstCube: Instrument Flight Firmware

BurstCube is a 6U (10 cm x 20 cm x 30 cm) CubeSat designed to detect and localize gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) in the < 50keV to > 1MeV energy range, and then quickly downlink the information via TDRSS. The BurstCube pipeline processes the data and a summary is distributed via the GCN. BurstCube is slated to launch in late 2022. Signals from each of the instrument’s four CsI scintillators are read out with silicon photomultipliers (SiPMs), digitized, and then processed by the instrument FPGA before being sent to the Command and Data Handling (C&DH) system. C&DH processing is performed by a SpaceCube Mini-Z, which is based on the Xilinx Zynq 7000-series SoC, comprising a 2-core ARM processor with attached FPGA fabric. The C&DH-side instrument flight firmware (IFFW) captures digitized, time-tagged photons from the instrument FPGA and fans into one of several different datastreams used by the instrument flight software (IFSW) to generate science telemetry and GRB triggers. The flight operating system, a custom flavour of Linux running NASA’s Core Flight System (cFS), runs on the ARM side and handles spacecraft operations, instrument commanding, and the generation of rapid GRB alerts. In this contribution we present the IFFW and the corresponding IFSW API.

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