Conservative Analytical Collision Probabilities for Orbital Formation FlyingThe literature offers a number of approximations for analytically and/or efficiently computing the probability of collision between two space objects. However, only one of these techniques is a completely analytical approximation that is suitable for use in the preliminary design phase, when it is more important to quickly analyze a large segment of the trade space than it is to precisely compute collision probabilities. Unfortunately, among the types of formations that one might consider, some combine a range of conditions for which this analytical method is less suitable. This work proposes a simple, conservative approximation that produces reasonable upper bounds on the collision probability in such conditions. Although its estimates are much too conservative under other conditions, such conditions are typically well suited for use of the existing method.
Carpenter, J. Russell (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
August 23, 2013
September 1, 2004
Publication: Proceedings from the 2nd International Symposium on Formation Flying Missions and Technologies