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Closed-loop Control of Spacecraft Formations with Applications on SPHERES

By  and Matthew M. JeffreyP. How, L. Darmofal and Matthew M. Jeffrey

Abstract

Formation flying satellites offer potentially greater science returns and operational capabilities than attainable with a monolithic spacecraft. Successful control of a formation of spacecraft can be divided into two separate stages. The first stage creates a plan that meets a set of mission objectives, and the second stage implements the plan. Plans are specified as a sequence of ∆V commands executed at specific times during an orbit. This thesis presents an online method for generating fleet-wide plans, using convex optimization techniques, that satisfy multiple objectives. The approach allows for minimum and balanced fuel usage, can position spacecraft in arbitrary configurations, and favors low-maintenance orbits that do not drift apart. Additionally, the architecture is applicable not only to formation-keeping maneuvers, but also to formation reconfigurations. Various simulations demonstrate the importance of accurately implementing plans for formation flying as well as autonomous rendezvous an

Year: 2008
OAI identifier: oai:CiteSeerX.psu:10.1.1.217.1408
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