The Precision Formation Flying Integrated Analysis Tool (PFFIAT)Several space missions presently in the concept phase (e.g. Stellar Imager, Submillimeter Probe of Evolutionary Cosmic Structure, Terrestrial Planet Finder) plan to use multiple spacecraft flying in precise formation to synthesize unprecedently large aperture optical systems. These architectures present challenges to the attitude and position determination and control system; optical performance is directly coupled to spacecraft pointing with typical control requirements being on the scale of milliarcseconds and nanometers. To investigate control strategies, rejection of environmental disturbances, and sensor and actuator requirements, a capability is needed to model both the dynamical and optical behavior of such a distributed telescope system. This paper describes work ongoing at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center toward the integration of a set of optical analysis tools (Optical System Characterization and Analysis Research software, or OSCAR) with the Formation Flying Test Bed (FFTB). The resulting system is called the Precision Formation Flying Integrated Analysis Tool (PFFIAT), and it provides the capability to simulate closed-loop control of optical systems composed of elements mounted on multiple spacecraft. The attitude and translation spacecraft dynamics are simulated in the FFTB, including effects of the space environment (e.g. solar radiation pressure, differential orbital motion). The resulting optical configuration is then processed by OSCAR to determine an optical image. From this image, wavefront sensing (e.g. phase retrieval) techniques are being developed to derive attitude and position errors. These error signals will be fed back to the spacecraft control systems, completing the control loop. A simple case study is presented to demonstrate the present capabilities of the tool.
Stoneking, Eric (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Lyon, Richard G. (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Sears, Edie (Global Science and Technology, Inc. Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Lu, Victor (Emergent Space Technologies, Inc. United States)
August 23, 2013
September 1, 2004
Publication: Proceedings from the 2nd International Symposium on Formation Flying Missions and Technologies