The Autonomous Planetary Payload Support System (APPS) study investigates the feasibility, architectural and system design, and potential performance of a non-nuclear, small and lightweight platform whose goal is to provide resources and survival support to a planetary payload element, in order to ensure its operations under extreme surface conditions (absence of sunlight for extended periods).
The project started in April 2012 and was successfully completed in December 2014. Space Applications Services worked as subcontractor to OHB-CGS and was responsible for the avionics subsystems trade-off, preliminary architecture and detailed design.
Space Applications started the project with an extensive review of relevant technologies already available or still under development, and performed a technology trade-off. Then a complete design of the communications, power and data handling subsystems established and optimised by performing a parametric analysis of mass, volume and power consumption while maximising the overall operational duration. In order to quantitatively demonstrate the ability of the concept to support the survival and operations of a surface parametric performance model of the above mentioned avionics subsystems to be integrated in the overall system model by the prime contractor.
"This activity was carried out under a programme of, and funded by, the European Space Agency. The views expressed here can in no way be taken to reflect the official opinion if the European Space Agency."