Free-flyer path planning in the proximity to large space structures

Roger, Alexander B (2003) Free-flyer path planning in the proximity to large space structures. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

The development of the modem space stations into large, highly complex orbital structures such as the International Space Station (ISS), has brought about a requirement for free-flying vehicles to perform various inspection and maintenance task on the exterior of the station. Concentrating on the ISS-Inspector vehicle, this thesis investigates the trajectory and mission planning required for a small free-flying vehicle operating in close proximity to the ISS. Two complimentary methods are presented to permit safe manoeuvring around the ISS. Ellipse of Safety trajectories enforce long-term passive safety requirements in the presence of differential air drag during the fly-around phases of the mission, used to transfer between the docking port and observation points. Short-range, close proximity manoeuvring is permitted through the use of Potential Field Guidance methods, enhanced through Velocity Selection strategies to provide passively safe trajectories where possible. Finally, a mission planning tool is presented to permit the integrated planning of ISS-Inspector missions, with automated scheduling and trajectory selection, designed to optimise the use of available manoeuvring methods to maximise overall mission safety. This facilitates the rapid planning and prototyping of Inspector missions from within a single tool, which is available both to operators on the ground and the crew onboard the ISS.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Additional Information: Adviser: Colin McInnes
Keywords: Aerospace engineering
Date of Award: 2003
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2003-71468
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 10 May 2019 14:34
Last Modified: 10 May 2019 14:34
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/71468

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