Flight projects going beyond Earth and having a significant space science
component are likely to need a variety of "observation geometery" calculations
to support the planning for and analysis and archiving of science instrument
data. This is a small task compared to efforts needed to build and
launch an instrumented spacecraft, but if you don't already have a process
in mind—perhaps even some previous implmentation experience—it is
best to make some decisions early on. Project managers are encouraged to give
up-front attention to this topic to help achieve excellent results while
keeping cost and risk at low levels.
Selecting an Ancillary Data
System (PDF) discusses important considerations in selecting an
approach to providing ancillary data and observation geometry calculations
for a flight project. It also highlights possible advantages of using the
existing NASA SPICE system for doing so.
It could be useful to also examine the About
SPICE and About NAIF materials found on this