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Open AccessArticle

An Effectiveness Evaluation Model for Satellite Observation and Data-Downlink Scheduling Considering Weather Uncertainties

School of Reliability and Systems Engineering, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, China
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Remote Sens. 2019, 11(13), 1621; https://doi.org/10.3390/rs11131621
Received: 11 June 2019 / Accepted: 2 July 2019 / Published: 8 July 2019
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Abstract

Low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites play an important role in human space activities, and market demands for commercial uses of LEO satellites have been increasing rapidly in recent years. LEO satellites mainly consist of Earth observation satellites (EOSs), the major commercial applications of which are various sorts of Earth observations, such as map making, crop growth assessment, and disaster surveillance. However, the success rates of observation tasks are influenced considerably by uncertainties in local weather conditions, inadequate sunlight, observation dip angle, and other practical factors. The available time windows (ATWs) suitable for observing given types of targets and for transmitting data back to ground receiver stations are relatively narrow. In order to utilize limited satellite resources efficiently and maximize their commercial benefits, it is necessary to evaluate the overall effectiveness of satellites and planned tasks considering various factors. In this paper, we propose a method for determining the ATWs considering the influence of sunlight angle, elevation angle, and the type of sensor equipped on the satellite. After that, we develop a satellite effectiveness evaluation (SEE) model for satellite observation and data-downlink scheduling (SODS) based on the Availability–Capacity–Profitability (ACP) framework, which is designed to evaluate the overall performance of satellites from the perspective of time resource utilization, the success rate of tasks, and profit return. The effects of weather uncertainties on the tasks’ success are considered in the SEE model, and the model can be applied to support the decision-makers on optimizing and improving task arrangements for EOSs. Finally, a case study is presented to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method and verify the ACP-based SEE model. The obtained ATWs by the proposed method are compared with those by the Systems Tool Kit (STK), and the correctness of the method is thus validated. View Full-Text
Keywords: LEO satellite; time window; effectiveness evaluation LEO satellite; time window; effectiveness evaluation
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Zhang, S.; Xiao, Y.; Yang, P.; Liu, Y.; Chang, W.; Zhou, S. An Effectiveness Evaluation Model for Satellite Observation and Data-Downlink Scheduling Considering Weather Uncertainties. Remote Sens. 2019, 11, 1621.

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