A simple method of controlling recording and display of imaging spectrometer data in (airborne) flight was needed. Existing commercial packages were overly complicated, and sometimes difficult to operate in a bouncing plane. The software also was required to keep up with the imaging data rate, while still running on commodity hardware and a desktop operating system. Finally, the software needed to be as robust as possible — repeating a flight because of lost data is sometimes impossible, and always expensive.
This software displays and records imaging and navigational data from a connected JPL-developed imaging spectrometer with corresponding electronics. It allows user manipulation of imagery in real time (e.g., stretching) and monitors resource utilization and temperature. The software provides a wide variety of user-customizable settings, and provides a user interface to attached devices (e.g., shutter, onboard calibrator, attached environmental control system, etc.). Software maintains a log of user activities, with an annotation capability. It also displays plots of navigation data and provides optional display of run-time diagnostics.
The software runs on Linux, which is unusual for real-time image acquisition applications. The user interface is implemented using a multi-platform, open-source library (gtkmm).