Electric Satellite Station Keeping, Attitude Control, and Momentum Management by MPC

Ryan J. Caverly, Stefano Di Cairano, Avishai Weiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We propose a model predictive control (MPC) policy for simultaneous station keeping, attitude control, and momentum management of a low-thrust nadir-pointing geostationary satellite equipped with reaction wheels and ON-OFF electric thrusters mounted on boom assemblies. Attitude control is performed using an inner loop SO(3)-based control law with the reaction wheels, while the outer loop MPC policy maintains the satellite within a narrow station-keeping window and performs momentum management using electric thrusters. For reducing propellant consumption, our MPC uses two different prediction horizons: a short horizon for the states associated with the orbit's inclination and a longer horizon for all other states. Furthermore, to handle the ON-OFF nature of the thruster while retaining low computational burden, we develop a strategy for quantizing the continuous thrust command, which also allows for trading off the number thrust pulses and fuel consumption. We validate the controller in a closed-loop simulation with the high-precision orbit propagation provided by the Systems Tool Kit (STK) and assess the robustness to model uncertainty and measurement noise.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalIEEE Transactions on Control Systems Technology
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
IEEE

Keywords

  • Attitude control
  • electric propulsion
  • model predictive control (MPC)
  • momentum management
  • satellite
  • spacecraft control.

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