Development and control of a three-axis satellite simulator for the bifocal relay mirror initiative
Chernesky, Vincent S.
Agrawal, Brij N.
Spencer, Michael G.
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The Three Axis Satellite Simulator (TASS) is a 4-foot diameter octagonal platform supported on a spherical air bearing. The platform hosts several satellite subsystems, including rate gyros, reaction wheels, thrusters, sun sensors, and an onboard control computer. This free-floating design allows for realistic emulation of satellite attitude dynamics in a laboratory environment. The bifocal relay mirror spacecraft system is composed of two optically coupled telescopes used to redirect the laser light from ground-based, aircraft-based or spacecraft based lasers to distant points on the earth or in space for a variety of non-weapon, force enhancement missions. A developmental version of this system was integrated onto the TASS as an auxiliary payload. The objective of this thesis was to develop and test the integrated optics and TASS system. This effort included hardware design, fabrication, and installation; platform mass property determination; and the development and testing of control laws and signal processing routines utilizing MATLAB and SIMULINK. The combination of the TASS with the bifocal relay mirror payload allowed for dynamic, real-time testing and validation of the target acquisition, tracking, and laser beam pointing technologies as well as satellite stabilization.
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