SpaceWire missions and architectures

Steve Parkes, Philippe Armbruster, Yuriy Sheynin, Masaharu Nomachi

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingOther chapter contribution

    10 Citations (Scopus)


    SpaceWire is an onboard data-handling network for spacecraft which connects together instruments, mass-memory, processors and telemetry sub-systems. It offers high-speed, low power, simplicity, low cost, and architectural flexibility making it ideal for many space missions. It provides high-speed (2 Mbits/s to 200 Mbits/s), bi-directional, full-duplex, data links wh ich connect the SpaceWire enabled equipment. Networks can be built to suit particular applications using point-to-point data links and routing switches. Application information is sent along a SpaceWire link in discrete packets. Since the SpaceWire standard was published in January 2003, it has been adopted by ESA, NASA, JAXA and RosCosmos for many missions and is being widely used for commercial and other spacecraft. High-profile missions using SpaceWire include: Bepi-Colombo, James Webb Space Telescope, ExoMars, Gaia, Astro-H, GOES-RT, Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, Swift, PnPSat, and TacSat. This paper, aimed at project managers and system engineers, shows how SpaceWire is being used on current missions, and how the heritage, available technology and capability of SpaceWire make it an ideal data-handling network for many future missions.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publication60th International Astronautical Congress 2009, IAC 2009
    PublisherInternational Astronautical Federation
    Number of pages8
    ISBN (Print)9781615679089
    Publication statusPublished - 2009


    • Bi-directional
    • Data link
    • Exo-Mars
    • Full-duplex
    • Future mission
    • High-speed
    • James Webb Space Telescope
    • Low cost
    • Low power
    • Lunar reconnaissance orbiters
    • On currents
    • Point data
    • Project managers
    • Roscosmos
    • Routing switches
    • Space missions
    • Sub-systems
    • System engineers
    • SpaceWire


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