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Ascending Node Technologies Receives Small Business Innovation Research Phase II Award from NASA

Spaceline allows space mission designers and operators to communicate complex ideas seamlessly, displaying interactive, 3D visualizations of flight telemetry right in your web browser.

TUCSON, Ariz. – Ascending Node Technologies, LLC., a Tucson-based company that develops innovative software to support spaceflight operations, announced that it has been awarded a Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract from NASA. The two-year Phase II contract will allow Ascending Node to develop and deploy its Spaceline product, a web-based tool that provides user-friendly, telemetry-based visualizations of spacecraft and planetary data for space mission planning.

Spaceline solves an enduring challenge for mission designers – the need for an understandable, 3D visual representation of planned spacecraft operations that can be easily shared across the mission team for comparison, review, and feedback. Spaceline provides rapid visualization of telemetry data derived from NAIF SPICE kernels, a standard telemetry file format for interplanetary exploration missions. The web-based product also generates simulated predicted science data, allowing mission designers to get an early start on calibration/validation pipelines.

“Spaceline brings modern software and version control technologies to the frontier of space exploration, allowing mission teams to work more effectively together,” said Sanford Selznick, Ascending Node chief software architect. “We are pleased to have NASA recognize the value of our approach to mission planning, and we are excited for the positive impact Spaceline will have on mission productivity.”

Spaceline directly responds to NASA’s objective to develop mission design tools that increase the accuracy of mission science modeling and support observation planning. By providing an accessible, sharable science planning platform, Spaceline reduces both cost and risk for spacecraft missions at every stage of development. Spaceline’s architecture calls for a well-maintained server architecture and a simple browser-based front-end to drive a real-time, interactive experience.

The highly competitive SIBR Phase II awards are designed to advance NASA’s priorities in aeronautics, human exploration and operations, science, and space technology. Ascending Node was selected after having successfully demonstrated Spaceline’s feasibility following the receipt of a SBIR Phase I award in 2019. As a Phase II awardee, Ascending Node will now develop and demonstrate its Spaceline technology over the next two years before delivery to NASA.

About Ascending Node Technologies

Ascending Node Technologies, LLC, is a Tucson-based company that develops technology to allow spacecraft mission designers and operators to work better together. Spaceline is the company’s new web-based application that creates telemetry-based, interactive 3D visualizations of spacecraft operations right in your browser, which can then be shared across the mission team for easy collaboration and feedback. Ascending Node’s founders have more than half a century’s combined experience planning, developing and operating interplanetary exploration missions. In 2020, NASA awarded Ascending Node a Phase II SBIR contract for the development of Spaceline. Learn more at www.ascendingnode.tech.

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