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Jon McBride Testing & Research

Jon McBride Testing and Research (JSTAR) is a subgroup within the NASA IV&V Program’s IV&V office. JSTAR’s main role consists of providing computer simulations of embedded spacecraft environments. These simulations allow spacecraft software to be tested, verified, and validated. JSTAR performs research and developmental efforts in order to improve testing methods and is also responsible for managing and enhancing the JSTAR laboratory network.

To learn more about JSTAR, take a look into the team’s Capabilities and Technologies, current Projects, history with Small Satellite Missions, and Who We Are as a whole.

JSTAR Lab Logo

Capabilities and Technologies

JSTAR has been formed to provide NASA IV&V with the ability to verify and validate mission outcomes through what is known as Independent Testing. The team found that the most successful way to provide this service is through the creation of software-only simulation environments. JSTAR’s wide set of skills has led to many advancements in the field of software-only simulation.

To read specifics about the capabilities and technologies utilized by the JSTAR team, look at what goes into each JSTAR Simulation.

To learn about services provided by the JSTAR team, read about JSTAR’s use of Software Automation

Small Satellite Missions

The JSTAR team’s work with small satellite missions has not only advanced their own technologies, but also has opened many doors for the community. To see the team’s outreach work and how it has increased their capabilities, read about Simulation to Flight 1 and NASA Operational Simulation for Small Satellites. NASA Operational Simulator for Small SatellitesNOS Engine

Who We Are

JSTAR is a team of software engineers apart of the NASA IV&V facility in Fairmont, WV. Many of their contributions to the IV&V team have earned them recognition and awards in the NASA community.

Awards Received

The NASA Software of the Year competition is an annual competition sponsored by the Offices of the Chief Engineer, Safety and Mission Assurance (SMA), and the Chief Information Officer. Software teams across each of the NASA centers submit extensive applications detailing their software, all software project documentation, reference letters, SMA documentation, and associated publications. Each team gives a presentation at NASA headquarters in Washington, D.C., and then the applications and presentations are reviewed based on the software’s innovativeness, impact, and usability by a special Software Panel with representatives from across the agency.

The JSTAR team has been the proud recipient of two Honorable Mention awards at NASA Software of the Year competitions. Its first award was for its first development of a software-only simulation in an effort to aid the Global Precipitation Measurements mission in 2012, known as GO-SIM. The second, awarded in 2016, was software developed for the James Webb Space Telescope, known as JIST. Both have had great impact on their respective missions, resulting in their prestigious recognition in the NASA community.

JSTAR JIST Team standing in front of a building
JSTAR JIST Team Award 2016