JPL Operations Engineers (Operators) need to interact with their telemetry to assess the health of and successfully operate a spacecraft or rover. Operators must analyze the immediate data for health and understand the current state of these complex systems, but they also must be able to evaluate the long-term engineering data to identify trends and potential pitfalls that develop over time. Whether starting with long-term trends or short-term data, operators have large amounts of data and need a tool so that their expertise is spent analyzing the data and trends, rather than working to tease these trends from outdated toolsets not equipped to handle large data sets. Existing tools pre-compute either long-term trends or short-term plots, but further ad-hoc analysis is prohibitively difficult, can take many hours per query, and queries necessitate either special access or that the operator be on a specific network to access data and to correlate it to models.
The Streams telemetry analysis tool hosts mission data in a new search database called Elasticsearch, and provides a hyper-responsive interface that allows operators to rapidly search for only the data points of interest to them. The Web-based Streams interface is a novel adaptation of the open-source Rickshaw.js library that converts operator action into a precise search query. This query returns an intelligently selected subset of data that can be rapidly visualized to the operator in an interactive display.
Streams drew its inspiration from popular financial charting tools that allow users to rapidly see one day or one decade’s worth of data in one interactive plot on the Web. Streams is integrated alongside gold-source data-storage systems to provide a parallel index of data specific for the interrogative workflow that operators need. Allowing users to see and easily share (using restful URLs) their data sometimes thousands of times faster using a secure Web connection fundamentally changes the way experts intelligently operate NASA’s missions.
Streams introduces many novelties to mission operations. By rethinking telemetry access as a search problem, operators are now able to search through billions of data points, compare any set of telemetry channels, and visualize only as many data points as are necessary to understand the underlying vehicle health and performance. This allows, for example, intelligent subsampling that can reduce millions of data points into thousands that can be immediately returned and presented to an operator.
Streams also marks the first known application of the open-source Elasticsearch project into mission operations telemetry. This unique application is paving the way for more accessible search capability throughout multiple missions now.
This work was done by Daniel G. Isla, Gordon C. Cucullu III, Robert J. Witoff, Keith L Naviaux, Elizabeth A. Dewell, Tomas J. Soderstrom, Rebecca L. Mikhaylov, Ramona H. Tung, Daniel A. Zayas, and Andrew Hart of Caltech for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. This software is available for license through the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and you may request a license at: https://download.jpl.nasa.gov/ops/request/request_introduction.cfm. NPO-49640