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NASA to Transmit High Definition Video From Space Using DVB Master FD

DVEO, the broadcast division of CMI, today announced that NASA will use their DVB Master FD PCI board to send high definition video streams from the International Space Station. The DVB Master FD transmits and receives high definition video on the same compact computer card.

NASA will use the DVB Master FD to deliver live high definition television (HDTV) from the International Space Station to the Johnson Space Center (JSC) in Houston. JSC serves as the lead center in the design and implementation of the International Space Station—a U.S.-led collaborative effort of 16 nations. Recently, the International Space Station celebrated five continuous years of human presence aboard.

The International Space Station is implementing the Space Video Gateway (SVG) to send HDTV to earth. HDTV produces sharper, clearer images and more precise colors than standard video, making it especially beneficial for space exploration – objects can be seen better, even in dark environments.

Video transmitted from space, or “downlinked”, by the SVG will include images of outer space, footage of scientific experiments, communications with the crew, and “real time” inspections of space station equipment.

"We are delighted that the DVB Master FD will transmit high definition video via the Space Video Gateway”, said Laszlo Zoltan, Sales Manager for DVEO. "NASA tested the DVB Master FD and it met their stringent requirements for radiation and functionality with their systems.”

The SVG project has been using the DVB FD Master card in a development capacity for approximately one year. The SVG flight computer will use the DVB FD Master card to convert HD video to data for downlink by a process called “packetizing”. They will also use DVEO’s Streambed software, which interconnects video streaming equipment that has incompatible hardware or software interfaces. The packetized data is then downlinked via a NASA developed space communications Ethernet card.

The SVG ground computer uses a NASA developed space communications Ethernet card to receive the downlinked data. The DVB FD Master card and Streambed software are then used to “depacketize” HD video signals. The ground system also uses the Streambed software alone to depacketize standard definition video signals.

“DVEO has a long history of developing innovative technologies for broadcasters, and now our high definition video technology will be used in space. We are proud to be involved with NASA’s new HDTV transmissions and the International Space Station, " continued Les Zoltan. “We congratulate the International Space Station on its successes in five years of exploration, discovery, and international cooperation.”