NASA’s Disruption Tolerant Networking Challenge Series

Welcome to the NASA Disruption Tolerant Networking (DTN) project. DTN is an approach to computer network architecture that seeks to address the technical issues in heterogeneous networks that may lack continuous network connectivity. Examples of such networks are those operating in mobile or extreme terrestrial environments, or planned networks in space. Disruption may occur because of the limits of wireless radio range, sparsity of mobile nodes, energy resources, attack, and noise.

Project Background

Help NASA build a Network Monitoring & Management or “dashboard” for non-technical users of a Disruption Tolerant Network (DTN).

What is a Disruption Tolerant Network (DTN)? DTNs make use of store-and-forward techniques within the network in order to compensate for intermittent link connectivity. Examples of such networks are those operating in mobile or extreme terrestrial environments, or planned networks in space.

Project Objectives

As we move forward with DTN, it is now at a level in which we need to build a Network Monitoring & Management Interface or “dashboard” for non-technical users. Non-technical users will not be experts in the inner workings of DTN code, nor will they be experts in how to install and configure DTN using only shell tools and command line instructions.

To be useful, the set up, configuration and management of a DTN network needs to be easy for a reasonably competent end user.

This is where we need the help of the Topcoder community – we need to design a UI that is easy to use, intuitive and provides capabilities to help manage DTN. At this time, we are only working on the front-end design of the DTN dashboard.

Project Overview & Stats

This project launched in April, 2015 and was completed in July, 2015.

The project was completed using 3 challenges, and had 128 registrants from 14 different countries. The primary objectives of the project have been completed. Here’s a summary:
–Designed a UI that is easy to use, intuitive and provides capabilities to help manage DTN networks.
–The UI is extremely intuitive and provides the capability to monitor and manage remote nodes in a DTN, as well as visualizations of the current (as predicted), actual (as observed in real-time) and historical (as observed previously) network link health and status including (but not limited to) link connectivity, data rates, buffer capacity and utilization, and anomalies.

Resources