SpaceWire: Very high-speed serial link

European Cooperation for Space Standardization

    Research output: Other contribution


    SpaceFibre is a very high-speed serial link and network technology, designed specifically for use on board spacecraft. SpaceFibre is able to operate over fibre-optic and electrical cable and supports data rates of up to 5 Gbit/s (6,25 Gbit/s data signalling rate). It complements the capabilities of the widely used SpaceWire on-board networking standard: improving the data rate by a factor of 10, reducing the cable mass and providing galvanic isolation. Multi-laning improves the data rate further to well over 20 Gbit/s.

    SpaceFibre provides a coherent quality of service mechanism able to support bandwidth reserved, scheduled and priority-based qualities of service. It substantially improves the fault detection, isolation and recovery (FDIR) capability compared to SpaceWire.

    SpaceFibre aims to support high data-rate payloads, for example synthetic aperture radar and hyper-spectral optical instruments. It provides robust, long distance communications for launcher applications and supports avionics applications with deterministic delivery constraints through the use of virtual channels. SpaceFibre enables a common on-board infrastructure to be used across many different mission applications resulting in cost reduction and design reusability. SpaceFibre uses a packet format which is the same as SpaceWire enabling simple connection between existing SpaceWire equipment and high-speed SpaceFibre links and networks. Applications developed for SpaceWire can be readily transferred to SpaceFibre.

    The SpaceFibre standard specifies the interfaces to the user application and to the physical medium. Intermediate interfaces between protocol layers are also specified. The functions that a SpaceFibre interface has to implement are specified. Connector and cable characteristics for SpaceFibre optical and copper implementations are also specified.

    This standard may be tailored for the specific characteristics and constraints of a space project in conformance with ECSS-S-ST-00.
    Original languageEnglish
    PublisherEuropean Cooperation for Space Standardization
    Number of pages233
    Place of PublicationNoordwijk
    Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2019

    Publication series

    NameECSS Standards


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