Journal article

Time and Covariance Threshold Triggered Optimal Uncooperative Rendezvous Using Angles-Only Navigation

A time and covariance threshold triggered optimal maneuver planningmethod is proposed for orbital rendezvous using angles-only navigation (AON). In the context of Yamanaka-Ankersen orbital relativemotion equations, the square root unscented Kalman filter (SRUKF) AON algorithm is developed to compute the relative state estimations from a low-volume/mass, power saving, and low-cost optical/infrared camera's observations. Multi-impulsive Hill guidance lawis employed in closed-loop linear covariance analysis model, based on which the quantitative relative position robustness and relative velocity robustness index are defined. By balancing fuel consumption, relative position robustness, and relative velocity robustness, we developed a time and covariance threshold triggered two-level optimal maneuver planning method, showing how these results correlate to past methods and missions and how they could potentially influence future ones. Numerical simulation proved that it is feasible to control the spacecraft with a two-line element-(TLE-) level uncertain, 34.6% of range, initial relative state to a 100m v-bar relative station keeping point, at where the trajectory dispersion reduces to 3.5% of range, under a 30% data gap per revolution on account of the eclipse. Comparing with the traditional time triggered maneuver planning method, the final relative position accuracy is improved by one order and the relative trajectory robustness and collision probability are obviously improved and reduced, respectively.


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