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SimScape provides a collection of libraries and tools to use and manage terrain environment models within spacecraft simulation applications.

Space mission applications involving landers and surface exploration make extensive use of terrain models within their simulation testbeds. Such terrain models are large, complex and involve a variety of attributes including topography, radiosity, soil mechanics, hazards properties. Sources for the terrain models include planetary data archives, field tests, synthetic models as well as analytic ones. Simulation users of such models include surfeace rover vehicles' kinematics and dynamics models, instrument models, camera models, robotic arm models etc. While each of these has certain unique aspects, there is also a large degree of commonality among them.

The SimScape middleware toolkit provides common infrastructure for importing terrain model data from the multiple data sources and making them available to simulation applications. These terrain data sources include planetary and empirical terrain data sets, terrain synthesis models and analytical models. The SimScape infrastructure simplifies the overall simulation design by eliminating the traditional need for custom terrain model interfaces to terrain data sources and simulation users.

SimScape provides a local cache for managing and sharing terrain data products. It provides APIs for handling a whole host of terrain attributes including topography, texture, feature lists etc. properties. SimScape also includes classess to efficiently interact with and manipulate the terrain model information at run-time.