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Micropulsed Plasma Thrusters for Attitude Control of a Low-Earth-Orbiting CubeSatThis study presents a 3-Unit CubeSat design with commercial-off-the-shelf hardware, Teflon-fueled micropulsed plasma thrusters, and an attitude determination and control approach. The micropulsed plasma thruster is sized by the impulse bit and pulse frequency required for continuous compensation of expected maximum disturbance torques at altitudes between 400 and 1000 km, as well as to perform stabilization of up to 20 deg /s and slew maneuvers of up to 180 deg. The study involves realistic power constraints anticipated on the 3-Unit CubeSat. Attitude estimation is implemented using the q method for static attitude determination of the quaternion using pairs of the spacecraft-sun and magnetic-field vectors. The quaternion estimate and the gyroscope measurements are used with an extended Kalman filter to obtain the attitude estimates. Proportional-derivative control algorithms use the static attitude estimates in order to calculate the torque required to compensate for the disturbance torques and to achieve specified stabilization and slewing maneuvers or combinations. The controller includes a thruster-allocation method, which determines the optimal utilization of the available thrusters and introduces redundancy in case of failure. Simulation results are presented for a 3-Unit CubeSat under detumbling, pointing, and pointing and spinning scenarios, as well as comparisons between the thruster-allocation and the paired-firing methods under thruster failure.
Document ID
20170002644
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
External Source(s)
Authors
Gatsonis, Nikolaos A. (Worcester Polytechnic Inst. MA, United States)
Lu, Ye (Worcester Polytechnic Inst. MA, United States)
Blandino, John (Worcester Polytechnic Inst. MA, United States)
Demetriou, Michael A. (Worcester Polytechnic Inst. MA, United States)
Paschalidis, Nicholas (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Date Acquired
March 29, 2017
Publication Date
January 11, 2016
Publication Information
Publication: Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets
Volume: 53
Issue: 1
ISSN: 0022-4650
Subject Category
Spacecraft Propulsion and Power
Report/Patent Number
GSFC-E-DAA-TN40616
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other