As the Mars Relay Network is in constant flux (missions and teams going through their daily workflow), it is imperative that users are aware of such state changes. For example, a change by an orbiter team can affect operations on a lander team. This software provides an ambient view of the real-time status of the Mars network.

The Mars Relay Operations Service (MaROS) comprises a number of tools to coordinate, plan, and visualize various aspects of the Mars Relay Network. As part of MaROS, a feature set was developed that operates on several levels of the software architecture. These levels include a Web-based user interface, a back-end “ReSTlet” built in Java, and databases that store the data as it is received from the network. The result is a real-time event notification and management system, so mission teams can track and act upon events on a moment-by-moment basis.

This software retrieves events from MaROS and displays them to the end user. Updates happen in real time, i.e., messages are pushed to the user while logged into the system, and queued when the user is not online for later viewing. The software does not do away with the email notifications, but augments them with in-line notifications. Further, this software expands the events that can generate a notification, and allows user-generated notifications.

Existing software sends a smaller subset of mission-generated notifications via email. A common complaint of users was that the system-generated e-mails often “get lost” with other e-mail that comes in. This software allows for an expanded set (including user-generated) of notifications displayed in-line of the program. By separating notifications, this can improve a user’s workflow.

This work was done by Michael N. Wallick, Daniel A. Allard, Roy E. Gladden, Paul Wang, and Franklin H. Hy of Caltech; and Corey L. Peterson for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. For more information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

This software is available for commercial licensing. Please contact Dan Broderick at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. NPO-48288

Software Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the September, 2013 issue of Software Tech Briefs Magazine.

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