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Proceedings Paper

The software development process at the Chandra X-ray Center
Author(s): Janet D. Evans; Ian N. Evans; Giuseppina Fabbiano
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Paper Abstract

Software development for the Chandra X-ray Center Data System began in the mid 1990's, and the waterfall model of development was mandated by our documents. Although we initially tried this approach, we found that a process with elements of the spiral model worked better in our science-based environment. High-level science requirements are usually established by scientists, and provided to the software development group. We follow with review and refinement of those requirements prior to the design phase. Design reviews are conducted for substantial projects within the development team, and include scientists whenever appropriate. Development follows agreed upon schedules that include several internal releases of the task before completion. Feedback from science testing early in the process helps to identify and resolve misunderstandings present in the detailed requirements, and allows review of intangible requirements. The development process includes specific testing of requirements, developer and user documentation, and support after deployment to operations or to users. We discuss the process we follow at the Chandra X-ray Center (CXC) to develop software and support operations. We review the role of the science and development staff from conception to release of software, and some lessons learned from managing CXC software development for over a decade.

Paper Details

Date Published: 14 July 2008
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 7019, Advanced Software and Control for Astronomy II, 701917 (14 July 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.790524
Show Author Affiliations
Janet D. Evans, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (United States)
Ian N. Evans, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (United States)
Giuseppina Fabbiano, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7019:
Advanced Software and Control for Astronomy II
Alan Bridger; Nicole M. Radziwill, Editor(s)

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