Satellite And Control Systems

The PTR Group has substantial expertise with satellite, space robotic and ground station systems.  PTR Group engineers have helped place over 40 satellites successfully on orbit with over 300 total years of on-orbit operations.  From technology experiment satellites, to commercial communication satellite constellations, our staff has vast experience to offer:  system design, bus and payload flight software design and implementation, control algorithm development and implementation, space robotics, ground station software and systems, device driver and board support package development, and final system performance and environmental test. We pride ourselves on always being engaged in supporting cutting edge work in ground station and satellite based systems.

Spacecraft Systems

Our staff has a vast breadth of experience to offer in the realm of spacecraft system design and software development. As our Spacecraft Systems History shows, we have a long track record of demonstrated capability in all areas of the spacecraft design, implementation, integration, and testing lifecycles. Small satellite experience is only part of what makes The PTR Group unique. Specializing in real-time and embedded software, PTR engineers have developed flight software solutions with a wide range of technologies including more than a dozen CPU architectures, all popular RTOS offerings including VxWorks and Linux, multiple communication systems including RS485, MIL-STD 1553, Ethernet, CCSDS, HDLC, and more. We specialize in using our low-level implementation knowledge at the system level to build well-conceived, maintained, and efficient systems.

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Robotic Systems

The PTR Group also has considerable experience pioneering software systems in the fields of space, medical and underwater robotics. Many of these complex systems have been partially autonomous, distributed, remote, and/or safety-critical. PTR Group engineers have extensive experience in all aspects of robotic system development: control system bring up, integration of novel user interaction systems such as gesture- and mind-based control, flight software design and development, and system performance and environmental testing.

Since 2008, The PTR Group has provided key software development support to the Robotic Demonstration and Test Group in the Satellite Servicing Capabilities Office (SSCO) at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. PTR Group engineers have architected, designed and built a next generation distributed, cooperative, multi-robot software system to both demonstrate servicing tasks on the ground, and to evaluate the accuracy, capability, and usefulness of robotic servicing tools. Our engineers have been responsible for definition and implementation of a software development process satisfying NASA requirements, as well as working directly with robot hardware manufacturers to integrate their robots into the final system and to provide the level of required performance.  Learn more about our involvement with the Robotic Satellite Servicing Mission.

We have applied our space robotic software systems and expertise to projects at Naval Research Laboratory including: multiple cooperative robot arms in a satellite servicing role; a highly dextrous robot arm working in a constrained work site; rapid integration with another vendor's custom robotic system to demonstrate autonomous refueling; and integration with robotic skin to better enable sensing in an unknown, high constrained environment. Learn more about our involvement with the NRL Space Robotics Support.

The PTR Group is also heavily committed to the development of future robotic systems engineers.  Since 2008, the company has sponsored and provided mentors to high school teams in the US FIRST Robotics Competition.

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Mission Operation

With our knowledge of spacecraft systems design and flight software, The PTR Group offers expertise in the development and deployment of mission operation systems. Leveraging our flight software heritage, PTR Group Engineers create robust, high performance software and systems for mission operations. Learn more about our involvement with the Mission operations.

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