Podcast Episode 9: Moon vs Mars and Infrastructure and Imagination Leadership – SpaceQ

In this podcast episode I welcome back Wayne Ellis, a space and defence consultant with AppSpace Solutions of Winnipeg and past president of the CSS.

Source: Podcast Episode 9: Moon vs Mars and Infrastructure and Imagination Leadership – SpaceQ

Leveraging STK Coverage and Volumetrics to Re-create Russian Aircraft Buzzing of NATO Ship

Leveraging STK Coverage and Volumetrics to Re-create Russian Aircraft Buzzing of NATO Ship

In both the Baltic and the Black Sea, the Russians have been accused of flying their fighters dangerously close to US and NATO ships. These situations force the ship captains to maintain their sang-froid while the adversary aircraft venture within the ship’s missile engagement zone.

Shown here is a brief video re-creation using STK of a ‘buzzing incident’ in which a SU-34 is modeled as entering a ship protection zone and flying past at high speed. STK Coverage and the STK Volumetrics object are employed to visually display the danger zone, and in particular, the Su-34’s distance from it as it approaches.

Modeling, analysis, and movie-making are all covered during STKCore(TM) Training. The next course is 12-14 Sep, Ottawa, with Earlybird pricing ending mid-August!

SpaceQ Podcast Episode 6 – Catching Up On Current Events in the Canadian Space Community and the U.S. National Space Council – SpaceQ

cropped-choosespace.jpg{this SpaceQ Podcast includes a contribution from Wayne Ellis from AppSpace Solutions, Inc}

The latest SpaceQ podcast is out and we’re doing something a little different. Instead of an interview, my guest and I discussed notable current events.

Source: SpaceQ Podcast Episode 6 – Catching Up On Current Events in the Canadian Space Community and the U.S. National Space Council – SpaceQ

Canadian STK Case Study – Calculating Satellite Sensor Coverage to Optimize Viewing Opportunities

Canadian STK Case Study – Calculating Satellite Sensor Coverage to Optimize Viewing Opportunities

There is no doubt that the number of space systems has been steadily increasing over the past decade, and it is anticipated that hundreds to thousands will be added in the coming decade. A great majority of these systems will be Earth Observation (EO) satellites that are able to sense or take images of the planet via sensors such as cameras and radars. More specifically, they will be able to sense emitted or reflected energy from the ultraviolet to the visible and into the microwave spectrum. This is because the sensed energy can reveal different aspects about the scene under observation, and these aspects can translate into information on which subsequent decisions or actions might be made.


DRDC has developed a Multi-Sensor Acquisition Planning Tool

The coming glut of space-borne systems is both a benefit and a challenge to many organizations as they work to obtain the best benefit from them while reducing the cost to access them. Defence Research and Development Canada (DRDC) has been working for years to develop a multi-sensor acquisition planning tool with which they can compare various sensor/image-taking opportunities and determine which ones would best meet their acquisition needs.

DRDC has been leveraging STK, and in particular, STK Coverage in order to view, calculate and compare several sensor viewing opportunities to further their research into this operational problem. STK has a proven record of being able to integrate with other applications and data to enrich analysis and help solve sensor planning challenges. AGI worked with DRDC to put together a case study on this activity and it can be accessed here.

Get your team STK trained – STKCore(TM), 12-14 Sep 2017, Ottawa

Key aspects of STK Coverage are exercised during STKCore(TM) Training. The next serial (10 spots) is 12-14 Sep in Ottawa. Earlybird rates will expire mid-Aug so please register soon!wp-1493500806153.jpg


Unlocking Data Providers to Counter Unmanned Systems


(The Front Lines) – In the war against the unknown to which the power of modeling, simulation and analysis (MS&A) can be brought to bear, it is often helpful to be able to access, manipulate and leverage existing data in order to generate new insights into the operational problem. Take the increasingly important mission of countering unmanned systems – a product of the widespread proliferation and application of said systems – their capabilities now make them such that serious consideration must be made to limit or negate their effectiveness. This can span from kinetic (‘blow ’em out of the sky’) to passive (jamming/interfering with their control signals). With Systems Toolkit, it is trivial to quickly model an enemy unmanned aerial system (UAS) with a communications receiver, as well as both friendly static and moving transmission systems. The latter systems can then be set up at potential interferers such that their energy can overcome or jam the enemy UAS’ receiver.

EnemyUASComboAnother possible way to look at this type of scenario is to combine both the electromagnetic ‘access’ of the jamming transmitters to their target, and a specified ‘kill zone’ range interval. By accounting for the kind of transmitter system, available environment, rain and radio-frequency models, terrain, and object motion, STK is pretty good at identifying the likely jamming intervals for a given scenario. Via the Analysis Workbench Module (AWB) module, it is also possible to establish both a range profile for the enemy UAS with respect to the jammers, and to set a condition that specifies the range intervals of ‘interest’ to which the jammers may or must respond. The data for the specific dynamic ranges are ‘inherent’ to the STK scenario and thus via STK AWB, that information can be brought forward into the analysis to gain new insights into the mission.

This and similar aspects of STK AWB are covered during STKCore(TM) Training, with the next serial taking place 12-14 September, 2017, in Ottawa. Earlybird rates are available until mid-August. Click here to register.

Canadian STK Case Study – Quickly Building Mission Planning Applications



The combination of visualization, custom workflows, and open architecture technologies can produce dramatically-powerful mission planning applications.

(Mission Area – Maritime) I am often told, as I interact with my various AGI customers and (hopefully) future customers, that the visualization capability of Systems Toolkit (STK) is ‘second to none’, or at least, ‘really quite good’, but I think that overshadows some of its real strengths: its impactful analysis output and its ability to support rapid proto-typing.


Fortunately for one Canadian company, General Dynamics Canada (now General Dynamics – Mission Systems (GD-MS)), these two aspects came together to help them meet a deadline for a Defence Research and Development Canada client. GD-MS had won a contract to develop a mission planning proto-type application, and due to the sometimes frustrating nature of military procurement, their development window had shrunk alarmingly because the start date was delayed and yet the delivery date was a hard, fixed requirement.


The desired application had to include customized workflows within a Common Operating Picture (COP), and built on top of a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA).  With only four months available, GD-MS reached out to AGI and realized that they could quickly come up to speed on AGI’s technology and seamlessly integrate it with other applications and data. The full details of this case study can be found here.

Part of AGI’s help to GD-MS was in the form of STK training, both for the desktop application and its deployable analog, STK Engine. Learning about the STK Desktop helped the GD-MS engineers understand the particular inputs, outputs, and related data providers (there are thousands in STK) and this supported their rapid development cycle.  STKCore(TM) Training also assists with the familiarization of the STK business logic so that rapid concept development can occur, and/or impactful output from its many analytical displays, graphs, and reports. The next STKCore(TM) will take place in Ottawa, 12-14 September 2017 (Earlybird prices available until mid-Aug).

Configuring Complex Sensors – Attacking Fires with New Approaches

FireTeamContactv2(The Fire Front lines, Canada) The Canadian fire season is well upon us, and though many of us have been seeing our fair share of soggy weather lately, the sad trend is that the climate is getter warmer and many areas where our forests live are getting dryer. I was recently at the Earth Observation Summit in Montreal and one of the unique problem sets for remote sensing stakeholders is the leveraging of many sensor types and systems in the fight against forest fires. Common assets are satellites and aircraft to be sure, but the growing variety and usefulness of drones have raised their profile quite a bit.

Systems Toolkit is versatile in helping to model, analyze and convey the mission effectiveness of multi-domain assets. Beyond just the assets themselves, users can attach complex sensors to the assets and analyze them for obscuration from the asset body or Earth’s terrain. Further, objects on the ground can be modeled for terrain masking qualities. In the attached graphic, a Fire Team’s field of regard is qualified by the mountainous terrain, thus giving insight to mission planners for ensuring air-to-ground connectivity. This capability comes with the STK Pro module and is just one of the features explored during STKCore(TM) training.  The next serial is 12-14 September 2017, Ottawa, Canada.