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Algorithms and hardware for cryptographic protection of information in command and telemetric radio channel of foreign space systems


A.M. Andreyev – Ph.D. (Eng.), Associate Professor, Military Space Academy named after A.F. Mozhajskij (St. Petersburg)
G.N. Maltsev – Dr.Sc. (Eng.), Professor, Military Space Academy named after A.F. Mozhajskij (St. Petersburg)
M.Y. Fedorenko – Military Space Academy named after A.F. Mozhajskij (St. Petersburg)

At present, information security of space systems command and telemetric lines is actively developing. Closed mode of information transfer through the communication line is data transformation, which does not allow access to information without using hardware and software in which the algorithm of information protection is implemented.
Encryption is most effective method of closed mode of information transfer. Encryption is provided by using combinations of crypto-graphic algorithms with encoding, as a result of which the content of the message becomes inaccessible without presenting the key and performing an inverse transformation.
The trend of introducing security modes for the command and telemetry information transmission develops simultaneously with the direction on standardization and unification of information exchange modes with space vehicles. The standards of the Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS) provide for two levels of protection of information from unauthorized access: subscriber identification and data encryption. Developed in the last decade CCSDS standards recommend telemetry encryption.
In satellite command and telemetry systems cryptographic algorithms with secret key (symmetric encryption) are used. In this case, the same key is used for encryption and decryption. The most well-known symmetric encryption algorithms used US satellite command and telemetry systems are: АES (Advanced Encryption Standard), Cardholder, Caribou, Pegasus, Belshazzar, Centuriоn, DES (Data Encryption Standard). The AES algorithm is a modern encryption algorithm with a high degree protection.
National Security Agency (NSA) in USA and Cryptography Research and Evaluation Committees (CRYPTREC) in Japan are engaged in the application of encryption in the transmission of data. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is US organization in development and standardization of cryptographic protection equipment.
In space radio links streaming encoders are also used. They tend to have lower hardware complexity and provide higher data encryption speeds. Therefore, it is advisable to apply them in the transmission of telemetric information.
The most famous manufacturers of cryptographic protection equipment for space systems are Raytheon, Astrium, Thales Alenia Space, AMERGINT Technologies, SafeNet GSD, ViaSat, General Dynamics, L-3, Dynetics, Sypris Electronics.
Most foreign means of encryption of telemetric information is created on the basis of FPGA and VLSI. Since the advent of VLSI, many manufacturers of radio electronic equipment have begun to develop on their basis equipment for cryptographic processing of information. VLSIs are known, offered by Raytheon, Rainbow Technologies, SafeNet GSD, Philips and others. The advantage of used in space radio links VLSI-based encryption is a low mass, which is especially important for on-board encrypting apparatus.
The development of cryptographic information protection systems leads to the need to amend the relevant standards and guidance documents.
The analysis reflects the intensive development of technologies for the transmission of command and telemetry information over space radio links in closed modes. In most cases cryptographic algorithms of AES and Cardholder encryption are used to transmit command information to the spacecraft. And algorithms AES, Pegasus and Belshazzar are used for telemetry encryption.
At the same time, the methods of transmitting command and telemetry information over space radio links with cryptographic protection are developed both by increasing the capabilities of the encrypting apparatus, and by developing and applying new, more sophisticated cryptographic algorithms.

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