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Proceedings Paper

On-orbit testing of the video guidance sensor
Author(s): Richard T. Howard; Thomas C. Bryan; Michael L. Book
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Paper Abstract

The Video Guidance Sensor (VGS), part of NASA's Automated Rendezvous and Capture program, was flown on Shuttle mission STS-95 in October of 1998 to test on-orbit the functional characteristics of the VGS. This was the second flight of the VGS (the first flight was in 1997 on STS-87), and this time long-range tracking data was gathered during the experiment. The flight experiment sensor was designed to operate from 1.5 meter range out to 110 meter range, with a field-of-view of 16 by 21 degrees. The VGS tracked its target at a 5 Hz rate and returned 6-degree-of-freedom information on the target's position and attitude relative to the sensor. The VGS was mounted in the Shuttle cargo bay, and its target was mounted on the Spartan spacecraft being carried on this mission. The orbital testing of the VGS included operations with the target on the Shuttle's Remote Manipulator System (RMS) at the start of the 10-day mission, long-range data during the Shuttle rendezvous with the Spartan two days later, and some more RMS operations later in the mission. The data returned from the orbital testing included VGS diagnostics, acquisition, and tracking data, RMS positions, hand-held laser range data, tapes of the data from the VGS video camera, and orbital positioning data from the Spartan and the Shuttle to allow correlation of the VGS data with orbital best- estimate-of-truth data. The Video Guidance Sensor performed well in all phases of the testing, and the VGS is being incorporated into the ground testing of a complete automated rendezvous and docking system. Work on the development of the next generation VGS is continuing.

Paper Details

Date Published: 28 May 1999
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 3707, Laser Radar Technology and Applications IV, (28 May 1999); doi: 10.1117/12.351352
Show Author Affiliations
Richard T. Howard, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Thomas C. Bryan, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Michael L. Book, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3707:
Laser Radar Technology and Applications IV
Gary W. Kamerman; Christian Werner, Editor(s)

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