Contingent routing using orbital geometry in proliferated low-earth-orbit satellite networks
November 28, 2022
Optimum adaptive routing in proliferated low-earth-orbit (pLEO) satellite networks requires intensive computation. The very small size, light weight, and low power of individual satellites in such networks makes a centralized, terrestrial, SDN-like approach to routing computation an attractive solution. However, it is highly desirable to have a distributed backup routing capability onboard each satellite that can maintain service if the central computational node(s) fail or lose their pathway(s) to upload routing data frequently to each satellite. This paper presents a routing algorithm based on orbital geometry that has a very low computation and storage requirements and is suitable as a backup routing capability in the event of failure of a centralized routing calculation node or nodes. Path failure rate, path latency, and link resource usage are simulated for a 360-satellite Walker Delta constellation with 4 inter-satellite link (ISL) terminals per satellite, and with up to 10% of the satellites having failed. For the fully intact satellite constellation, path failure rate is zero (identical to a shortest path routing algorithm), while mean latency and average link resource usage are shown to be approximately 12% and 13% higher, respectively, than with shortest path routing. With 10 random satellite failures in the constellation, the geometric algorithm has a path failure rate of less than 0.5%, while the mean latency and link resource usage are approximately 12% and 16% higher, respectively, than with shortest path routing.