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Proceedings Paper

Automated rendezvous and capture system development and simulation for NASA
Author(s): Fred D. Roe; Richard T. Howard; Leslie Murphy
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Paper Abstract

The United States does not have an Automated Rendezvous and Capture/Docking (AR&C) capability and is reliant on manned control for rendezvous and docking of orbiting spacecraft. This reliance on the labor intensive manned interface for control of rendezvous and docking vehicles has a significant impact on the cost of the operation of the International Space Station (ISS) and precludes the use of any U.S. expendable launch capabilities for Space Station resupply. The Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) has conducted pioneering research in the development of an automated rendezvous and capture (or docking) (AR&C) system for U.S. space vehicles. This AR&C system was tested extensively using hardware-in-the-loop simulations in the Flight Robotics Laboratory, and a rendezvous sensor, the Video Guidance Sensor was developed and successfully flown on the Space Shuttle on flights STS-87 and STS-95, proving the concept of a video- based sensor. Further developments in sensor technology and vehicle and target configuration have lead to continued improvements and changes in AR&C system development and simulation. A new Advanced Video Guidance Sensor (AVGS) with target will be utilized as the primary navigation sensor on the Demonstration of Autonomous Rendezvous Technologies (DART) flight experiment in 2004. Realtime closed-loop simulations will be performed to validate the improved AR&C systems prior to flight.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 September 2004
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 5420, Modeling, Simulation, and Calibration of Space-based Systems, (3 September 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.542529
Show Author Affiliations
Fred D. Roe, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Richard T. Howard, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Leslie Murphy, NASA Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5420:
Modeling, Simulation, and Calibration of Space-based Systems
Pejmun Motaghedi, Editor(s)

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