Computational Physics, Inc. periodically publishes press releases, general company articles, and announcements of contract awards that would be of interest to the general public. Our volunteer efforts to support STEM education in our surrounding communities can also be found on our Educational Outreach section of the web site.
Dr. John Correira Appointed Member of JCOTS
CPI is pleased to announce that Dr. John Correira has been appointed as a member of the Virginia Joint Commission on Technology and Science (JCOTS) Nanosatellites Advisory Committee for 2015. The JCOTS Nanosatellites Advisory Committee is charged with studying issues relevant to small satellites and makes recommendations to the Joint Commission of Technology and Science, which was created in 1997 by the Virginia General Assembly. Dr. Correira participated in the June 17 committee meeting in Richmond, which included a preliminary proposal by Mary Sandy, Director of the Virginia Space Grant Consortium (VSGC), for a Small Sat Virginia Initiative. This initiative would foster collaboration between university, commercial and government with the goal of promoting the small satellite industry in the Commonwealth.
CPI Presents CREATIONS™ Software Suite
On June 12, 2014, Dr. Jennifer Tate gave a presentation titled “An overview of the CREATIONS™ software suite for simulating high fidelity imagery” at the 35th Review of Atmospheric Transmission Models (ATM) Meeting in Albuquerque, NM. The ATM Meeting is organized and sponsored by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), with further sponsorship provided by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society (GRSS). The conference showcases new research, innovation, and developments in a variety of areas related to remote sensing, including earth and planetary radiative transfer models, atmospheric scattering, hyperspectral imaging and atmospheric correction, surface characterization and retrievals, coupling and interaction of optical and atmospheric phenomena, and atmospheric structure and turbulence.
Dr. Tate’s presentation gave an overview of three models that are part of the CREATIONS™ software suite: the AETHER™ model for atmospheric radiative transfer; the GAIA™ model for generating terrain and cloud scenes; and the OCEANUS™ model for generating ocean scenes. The OCEANUS™ model has been integrated into GAIA™ to provide seamless terrain and ocean scenes. More information about these models can be found on their respective product pages, as well as in the model brochures.
CPI releases ACT (Atmospheric Correction Tool) v1.1
The Atmospheric Correction Tool (ACT) is a computer program created by CPI for the removal of atmospheric effects in remotely-sensed imagery. ACT performs atmospheric correction and calculates surface reflectance for an input image using radiative values calculated by the radiative transfer model AETHER™.
ACT v1.0 performed radiative correction and calculation of surface reflectance for Landsat 7 imagery. ACT v1.1 has added the capability of correcting Landsat 8 imagery as well as the ability to perform an optional topographic correction. The topographic correction takes into account the slope and aspect of the terrain surface for each image pixel in order to correct for differences in solar illumination, reducing self-shadowing due to terrain orientation. Simulating uniform illumination can improve results for applications such as land cover classification and vegetation analysis.
Development of ACT is ongoing, with plans for a cloud/haze removal capability and the addition of the DigitalGlobe Worldview-2 and BlackBridge RapidEye sensors planned for ACT v2.0. A summary of ACT capabilities and sample results can be found on the ACT webpage.
Navy Awards SeaPort-e Contract to Computational Physics, Inc.
The U.S. Navy has selected Computational Physics, Inc. to provide research and development, modeling and simulation, software engineering, and program support services under the Seaport Enhanced multiple-award contract vehicle.
SeaPort-e is the Navy's electronic platform for acquiring support services in 22 functional areas including Engineering, Financial Management, and Program Management. It is used by the Navy Systems Commands (NAVSEA, NAVAIR, SPAWAR, NAVFAC, and NAVSUP), the Office of Naval Research, the United States Marine Corps, and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA).
The term of CPI's indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity award from the U.S. Naval Sea Systems Command Warfare Center is five years.
NASA's MAVEN Spacecraft Launched from Cape Canaveral.
Nov. 18, 2013 – NASA’s Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) spacecraft was successfully launched at 1:28 pm ET from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. The spacecraft is now on its way to Mars, where it will perform the first dedicated mission to survey the planet's upper atmosphere. The mission is seeking to understand how the loss of atmospheric gas to space changed the Martian climate. Scheduled to arrive at Mars on Sept. 22, 2014, MAVEN will spend one year performing its primary science mission.
CPI is a member of the team supporting the MAVEN mission through a project with LASP at the University of Colorado (more information).
CPI Plays Key Role in GOLD Mission Selected by NASA
The Global-scale Observations of the Limb and Disk (GOLD) mission has been selected by NASA to be the next Heliophysics Explorer mission of opportunity. GOLD is a high-resolution far-ultraviolet (FUV) imaging spectrograph that will provide global-scale imaging of the Earth's disk and limb at high temporal cadence from geostationary orbit (GEO). From this vantage point GOLD will provide unprecedented measurements of the temperature and composition of the Earth's upper atmosphere (thermosphere and ionosphere). This will allow scientists to study the real-time response to geomagnetic storms and solar variability, a key link in understanding the atmospheric effects of space weather.
In addition, the GOLD mission breaks new ground by flying a NASA-funded science instrument onboard a commercial communications satellite, thus providing a critical first implementation of NASA's focus on cost-effective access to instruments in GEO. For more information on the GOLD mission see the NASA award announcement and the GOLD mission home page.
CPI plays a key role in several aspects of the GOLD mission. CPI scientists Dr. Doug Strickland and Dr. Jerry Lumpe are Co-Investigators and members of the GOLD Science Team. Dr. Lumpe also fills the role of GOLD Algorithms Manager. CPI scientists and software developers will direct the algorithm development, integration, and testing for the GOLD Science Data Center at the University of Central Florida. In that capacity CPI has primary responsibility for the production, validation, documentation, and quality assurance of all GOLD Science Data Products. This work capitalizes on CPI's extensive experience in algorithm development, data processing, and calibration/validation (cal/val) for previous satellite missions such as TIMED/GUVI, DMSP/SSUSI, POAM II/III, NPP/OMPS, UARS/SUSIM, SORCE/SOLSTICE, and others.
CPI Continues VLBI Project Support at USNO
CPI has received another follow-on 6-month contract with the United States Naval Observatory (USNO) to continue its support of the Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) project. This reflects the strong importance of the VLBI project to USNO and their regard for the quality of work that CPI provides in support of this project.
CPI was awarded a cost plus fixed fee contract with the Space Science Division of the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) to provide research and support in Upper Air Physics, Astronomy, and Remote Geo-Sensing. The contract work will address a wide range of topics that include: the remote sensing of atmospheric constituents; terrestrial, solar, and planetary atmosphere process studies; atmospheric backgrounds phenomenology; space-based sensor calibration/validation; and, radio signal analysis. The contract is for one (1) base year and four (4) option years with a total award amount of $3.7 million if all options are exercised (see FBO). This contract represents a continuation of more than 25 years of research support that CPI has provided to the Space Sciences Division, and is a testament to the outstanding quality of work that CPI staff have done, and continue to perform, for NRL.
We are pleased to announce a new $255,000, 13-month contract with the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP) at the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado to provide support for the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) mission. MAVEN, which is set to launch in 2013, will explore the planet’s upper atmosphere, ionosphere and interactions with the sun and solar wind. Scientists will use MAVEN data to determine the role that loss of volatile compounds, such as CO2, N2, and H2O, from the Mars atmosphere to space has played over time, giving insight into the history of Mars atmosphere and climate, liquid water, and planetary habitability. In support of the MAVEN mission to Mars, CPI is developing a neutral composition retrieval capability for daytime conditions in the Martian atmosphere. Work being performed by CPI includes: forward model enhancements to AURIC, retrieval capability enhancements to the optimal estimation code (OPT), sensor model development, model validation, and simulations.
CPI has received a follow-on 6-month contract with the United States Naval Observatory (USNO) to continue its support of the Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) project. USNO employs VLBI to measure the arrival of radio waves at separate antennas in order to determine the reference frames for stars and the Earth, and to predict the variable orientation of the Earth in three-dimensional space. USNO provides VLBI-based data products and is currently improving the software it implemented to replace the hardware-based system currently used for its processing of the VLBI data. CPI is taking on the challenge of automating the data processing to increase the processing efficiency, as well as designing and developing a graphical user interface (GUI) to provide easier monitoring and control of the software application that correlates data from an array of radio telescopes (a correlator) and associated data playback units.