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Lockheed Martin Uses Red Hat for Artemis Mission Simulations

Artemis I is a NASA mission that was launched to the moon on November 16, 2022. It was the first in a series of missions with which the space agency aims to bring humanity back to Earth's natural satellite.
E3 Magazine
November 20, 2023
This text has been automatically translated from German to English.

Preparations for Artemis I required extensive testing and analysis of the Orion spacecraft's flight software. Lockheed Martin, Orion's developer and prime contractor, had to simulate the spacecraft's performance under various conditions and scenarios to ensure optimal performance of the flight systems and return Artemis I safely to Earth.

Lockheed Martin's integrated Orion test lab near Denver, Colorado

(Source: Lockheed Martin)

The role of Red Hat

To this end, Lockheed Martin chose Red Hat OpenStack Platform and Red Hat Enterprise Linux to create a secure private cloud environment to host development, testing and simulation analysis of the flight software for the Orion spacecraft.

Lockheed Martin's software developers used Red Hat OpenStack Platform to host simulation development and test environments for end-to-end execution and functional testing of the flight system. They ran multiple versions of the flight software in parallel, optimizing hardware usage and reducing demands on operations teams.

The software developers also leveraged the automated capabilities of the Red Hat OpenStack platform. The Lockheed Martin team created a standardized service catalog with scalable virtual machine images that could be deployed quickly, repeatedly and consistently. Standardized decommissioning and shutdown procedures were also automated to maximize the efficient use of resources. This saved the team a lot of time that would otherwise have been spent on these procedures and allowed them to focus on accelerating the pace of innovation.

Red Hat Enterprise Linux is the standard operating system for mission simulations. With the support of Red Hat OpenStack Platform and Red Hat Enterprise Linux, the Lockheed Martin team successfully created, tested and demonstrated a 28-day simulation in a variety of scenarios. The simulation was completed well before the launch of Artemis I and contributed to a safe and successful return to the moon.

Artemis II

(Source: NASA)

The future of Artemis II

The launch of the next NASA mission, Artemis II, is planned for the end of 2024. This Artemis mission will have a crew on board, making it the first manned NASA mission to the moon since Apollo 17. With human lives at stake, it is all the more important to analyze, test and prepare for a successful and safe flight. Lockheed Martin, NASA and Red Hat will work together to ensure a smooth launch and return of Artemis II.

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