Dynamics and Control
of Distributed Spacecraft Systems
Robert Zickel
(collaborator), Konstantin
V. Kholshevnikov (collaborator),
David Mishne (collaborator),
MarcPhillipe Rudel (research staff), Igor Beigelman
(grad student), Yossi
Elisha (grad student)
::
Distributed space systems
lab: We have established a
testbed for developing distributed space systems and sparseaperture
interferometers. The lab includes a unique airbearing table for
simulating a frictionless
environment and four satellite models carrying magnetometers,
accelerometers and laser range finders. LOSonly control yields
cooperative motion. Each RoboPuck carries a lowgrade mirror for
testing new concepts in sparse aperture imaging. Intercommunication is
implemented using ZigBee. More details can be found on the DSSL website.
::
Optimal formationkeeping,
modelling and visualization of spacecraft formations:
This research is devoted to optimal formationkeeping of
multiplespacecraft formations, and developing a concomitant STKbased
visualization and simulation package for modelling spacecraft relative
motion.
::
The relative motion manifold and
metrics: What is the minimum,
maximum and mean distances between spacecraft flying in formation and
subjected to astrodynamical perturbations? This project, performed in
cooperation with Prof. Kholshevnikov from St. Petersburg University,
provided some of the answers.
::
Satellite collision avoidance
using GNSS positioning:
Formation flying missions must be equipped with collision avoidance
mechanisms. As part of the GEO6
project, we are working on
designing such systems using GNSS signals, and validating the
technology using the GRACE
mission telemetry.
::
The performance of EGNOS:
Using a GPS/EGNOS receiver, we are examining the integrity and
perfromance of EGNOS
in the mediterranean region. See MEDaCoN's
website.
Applied and
Theoretical Astrodynamics
Michael
Efroimsky (collaborator), Sergei
Kopeikin
(collaborator), Valery Lainey (collaborator), Dmitry
Pisarevsky
(research staff), Dani Meltzer (grad student), Eytan Brucker
(grad student), Sofia Belyanin (grad student), Ariel Vaknin (grad
student), Gali Nir (grad student)
::
Stationkeeping in the restricted
threebodyproblem: Designing
a stationkeeping methodology for spacecraft flying on orbits about the
collinear Lagrangian points. The model includes the effects of
eccentricity, fourthbody dynamics, oblateness and fourthbody
inclination.
::
Attitude dynamics in the
restricted threebody problem:
Examining the gravitational effect of the thirdbody on the passive
stabilization of spacecraft flying on libration point orbits, inclduing
the modified stability regions under a thirdbody perturbation.
::
Lowenergy transfers to distant
orbits of the Earth:
Designing a method for analytically characterizing orbits for
deepspace science missions, known as Distant Retrograde Orbits.
::
Orbits for space telescopes:
The resolution of midIR space telescopes is impaired by the zodiacal
dust cloud. Going above or below the ecliptic plane dramatically
improves the diffraction limit due to IR scattering. This research
looks into efficient ways of putting a spacecraft on outofecliptic
orbits.
::
Astrodynamical modelling and
analytical study of geostationarry satellites:The
increasing lifetime of GEO satellites poses new challenges for
astrodynamicists. One such challenge, for instance, is modelling the
effect of equinoctial precession on the longterm dynamics of
communication satellites and space debris.
::
Longterm behavior of orbits about
precessing planets:
Using semianalytical modelling of timevarying equinoctial precession
and a myriad of other orbital perturbations, determine the longterm
faith of natural satellites orbiting precessing planets (e.g. Deimos
and Phobos). A multiyear collaborative project perfromed with Dr.
Michael Efroimsky of USNO
and Dr. Valery Lainey of the Royal
Observatory of Belgium.
::
New methods for relativistic
modelling of the twobody problem: The
gauge freedom of the planetary equations (discovered by Dr. Efroimsky),
can be used to simplify the astrodynamical modelling of the
parameterized postNewtonian effect on satellites. This project is
perfromed in collaboration with Dr. Efroimsky of USNO
and Dr. Kopeikin
of UMC.
Dynamical Systems and
Optimization Theory
Anthony
Bloch (collaborator), Dan
Butnariu
(collaborator), Yair Censor
(collaborator), Michael
Efroimsky
(collaborator), Antonio
Elipe (collaborator), KaiYew
Lum (collaborator), Itzik Klein (research staff)
::
Application of gauge symmetry to
improving numerical integration:
It can be shown that variational transformations exhibit symmetry which
may be utilized to reduce the local integration error of the
RungeKutta method, as well as stabilizing the Euler explicit method.
::
The feasible control method:
This is a project in cooperation with Prof. Yair
Censor from the University of Haifa, who developed numerical
algorithms
for solving convex fesibility problems. These methods are
implemented on reallife control problems to yield a useful tool for
system optimization.
::
The SerretAndoyer project:
It turns out that a canonical representation of rigid body dynamics may
provide much insight into modelling and control of rigidbody dynamics.
We are pursuing a few problems in this regard. Some of the work is
performed in collaboration with Prof. Anthony Bloch from the University
of Michigan and Dr. Efroimsky
from USNO.
Communication and
Coordination of Multiagent Systems and Sensor Networks
Dimitri
Kanevsky (collaborator), Avishy
Carmi (reseach staff), Sharoni Feldman (research staff), alexei rosich
(grad student)
::
Decentralized coordination and
communication of UAVs: Our
group is conducting research on cooperative motion of multiagent
systems. See
media
coverage.
::
Cooperative Prarafoils:
Endowing guided parafoils with the ability to intercommunicate may
significantly improve the chances of successful airdrop. A technology
for communication and autonomous task assignment of cooperative
parafoils is being developed as part of the FastWing
CL Project.
::
Sensor networks:
A technology for efficient routing in very large scale wireless sensor
networks is being developed, as well as efficient acoustic detection
methods using BaumWelsh algorithms. This project is an ongoing
collaboration between Dr. Dimitri Kanevsky (IBM
Watson), Avishy Carmi
(currently at the University of
Cambridge)
and Dr. Sharoni Feldman
(Technion and IAI).
VisionBased
Navigation
and Control
Ehud
Rivlin (collaborator), Hector
Rotstein (collaborator), Ronen
Keidar (collaborator), Oshra
Belpolsky (grad student), Shai Segal (grad student), Vadim Indelman
(grad student)
::
Navigation system performance
enhancement using online mosaicking: Some
aerial vehicles are equipped with cameras capable of building a mosaic
image of the environment. This research examines whether this process
can be used as an auxiliary mechanism for pose estimation and
autonomous visionbased path planning.
::
Visionbased localization of a
lunar satellite: Autonomous
navigation in fututre lunar missions can be accomplished using onboard
cameras and computer vision algorithms. This research models the
astrodynamical environment of the moon and develops autonomous lunar
navigation algorithms using imagebased localization theory.
::
Visionbased control of relative
spacecraft dynamics: Computer
vision can be used to regulate the relative attitude and position
between satellite both in the cooperative and noncooperative cases.
This research examines whether stereoscopic vision can be used to
achieve these goals, and to what degree of accuracy.
::
Autonomous visioncontrolled
quadrotor for indoor navigation: A
collaborative project between the Distributed Space Systems Lab and
the Intelligent
Systems Lab (CS, Technion),
aimed at designing a
microrotorcraft capable of autonomously navigating indoors using
vision sensors.
