CSE498, Collaborative Design, Fall 2023
Computer Science and Engineering
Michigan State University

Lockheed Martin Space, a division of Lockheed Martin, is one of the largest companies in the aerospace, military support, security, and technologies industry. They work with government and commercial customers to create breakthrough technologies to discover more of space and defend the U.S. and its allies.

Lockheed Martin satellites continuously collect data during space missions. Historically, satellites have offloaded all major data processing functions to ground resources due to computing limitations of in-flight hardware.

With the recent advancements in radiation resistant processing devices, satellites now offer additional processing power in orbit. Lockheed Martin developed the SmartSat™ software infrastructure to facilitate development of satellite flight software and leverage new capabilities in satellite hardware. SmartSat satellites have an open system architecture with significant in-orbit re-programmability, meaning they can be used for a variety of diverse missions.

Our SmartSat Heterogeneous Computing in Space system makes it easier for mission applications to utilize the full power of diverse processing devices in flight. Our system enables faster data processing by enabling algorithms to be run on many types of processing devices to ensure optimal execution. Our software makes real-time decisions on how to best distribute many unique applications across the computing systems available on the satellite.

Our Heterogeneous Computing in Space platform enables efficient computation onboard satellites, consequently improving the efficiency, and reduces the cost for Lockheed Martin.

Our back-end system is built using Lockheed Martin’s SmartSat SDK. The application uses AMD Vitis and SYCL to run accelerators on available hardware. The software is built and tested on the Xilinx ZCU102 multiprocessor system on a chip (MPSoC).