EADS Astrium and SCADE Suite® Play Crucial Role in Development of Space Applications
EADS Astrium Space Transportation is a business division of EADS Space, a subsidiary of the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company (EADS). Astrium employs 15,000 people in five countries: France, Germany, the UK, Spain and the Netherlands. Astrium is the established European leader in space transportation, satellite systems and services. Past projects include Ariane, the International Space Station, Envisat, Mars Express and Skynet 5.
EADS Astrium chose SCADE Suite for development of the Automatic Transfer Vehicle (ATV) on the International Space Station (ISS). The ATV supplies the following services to the ISS: refueling, orbit corrections, freight delivery and trash destruction. SCADE Suite fulfilled the development requirements of EADS Astrium because it allowed for the fusion of specifications and design. Unit and integration testing was possible at the model level, decreasing the numbers of errors found late in the development cycle and reducing delays and costs. Moreover, model-driven engineering with SCADE Suite allowed for easy communication among systems teams, software teams, customers and external reviewers. Early verification via the strong Scade semantic ensured consistency and completeness of the formal model.
During the development of the ATV, SCADE Suite was utilized to describe the software architecture and behavior of system components. Example model inputs included types, constants, state machines, and sequencing. Documentation was automatically generated with SCADE Suite’s SCADE Model Reporter.
The ATV mission to the ISS began on March 9, 2008 with the launch of the vehicle by an Ariane 5 rocket. On April 5, 2008, the ATV docked with the ISS. EADS Astrium reported that they experienced improvements to specification quality during the development of the ATV because of SCADE Suite. Specifically, they reported suppression of ambiguity due to formal semantics, early detection of errors by simulation and exhaustive proofs of critical properties, which allowed for error detection early in the development cycle.
In addition to the ATV, EADS Astrium used SCADE Suite to formalize the specifications for the M51 missile software and the Vega rocket software. They plan to utilize SCADE Suite on future projects too, including evolution of the ATV and potentially suborbital flight vehicles.