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RHC‐based attitude control of spacecraft under geometric constraints

Cui Hutao (School of Astronautics, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, People's Republic of China)
Cheng Xiaojun (School of Astronautics, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, People's Republic of China)
Xu Rui (School of Aerospace Engineering, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, People's Republic of China)
Cui Pingyuan (School of Aerospace Engineering, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing, People's Republic of China)

Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology

ISSN: 0002-2667

Article publication date: 6 September 2011

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose an attitude control algorithm for spacecraft with geometric constraints.

Design/methodology/approach

The geometric constraint is reformulated as a quadratic form when quaternion is used as attitude parameter, then the constraint is proved to be nonconvex and is further transformed to a convex one. By designing a new constraint formulation to satisfy the real constraint in the predictive horizon, the attitude control problem is reshaped to a convex planning problem which is based on receding horizon control.

Findings

The proposed algorithm is more effective in handling geometric constraints than previous research which used single step planning control.

Practical implications

With novel improvements to current methods for steering spacecraft from one attitude to another with geometric constraints, great attitude maneuver path can be achieved to protect instruments and meanwhile satisfy mission requirements.

Originality/value

The attitude control algorithm in this paper is designed especially for the satisfaction of geometric constraints in the process of attitude maneuver of spacecraft. By the application of this algorithm, the security of certain optical instruments, which is critical in an autonomous system, can be further assured.

Keywords

Citation

Hutao, C., Xiaojun, C., Rui, X. and Pingyuan, C. (2011), "RHC‐based attitude control of spacecraft under geometric constraints", Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, Vol. 83 No. 5, pp. 296-305. https://doi.org/10.1108/00022661111159906

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited