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Development of Navigation Doppler Lidar for Future Landing MissionA coherent Navigation Doppler Lidar (NDL) sensor has been developed under the Autonomous precision Landing and Hazard Avoidance Technology (ALHAT) project to support future NASA missions to planetary bodies. This lidar sensor provides accurate surface-relative altitude and vector velocity data during the descent phase that can be used by an autonomous Guidance, Navigation, and Control (GN&C) system to precisely navigate the vehicle from a few kilometers above the ground to a designated location and execute a controlled soft touchdown. The operation and performance of the NDL was demonstrated through closed-loop flights onboard the rocket-propelled Morpheus vehicle in 2014. In Morpheus flights, conducted at the NASA Kennedy Space Center, the NDL data was used by an autonomous GN&C system to navigate and land the vehicle precisely at the selected location surrounded by hazardous rocks and craters. Since then, development efforts for the NDL have shifted toward enhancing performance, optimizing design, and addressing spaceflight size and mass constraints and environmental and reliability requirements. The next generation NDL, with expanded operational envelope and significantly reduced size, will be demonstrated in 2017 through a new flight test campaign onboard a commercial rocketpropelled test vehicle.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Amzajerdian, Farzin
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Hines, Glenn D.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Petway, Larry B.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Barnes, Bruce W.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Pierrottet, Diego F.
(Coherent Applications, Inc. Hampton, VA, United States)
Carson, John M., III
(NASA Johnson Space Center Houston, TX, United States)
Date Acquired
September 30, 2016
Publication Date
September 13, 2016
Subject Category
Lasers And Masers
Report/Patent Number
Meeting Information
AIAA Space 2016(Long Beach, CA)
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 477547.01.01.23
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.

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