Wave-Based Attitude Control of Spacecraft with Fuel Sloshing Dynamics

Open access


Wave-Based Control has been previously applied successfully to simple under-actuated flexible mechanical systems. Spacecraft and rockets with structural flexibility and sloshing are examples of such systems but have added difficulties due to non-uniform structure, external disturbing forces and non-ideal actuators and sensors. The aim of this paper is to extend the application of WBC to spacecraft systems, to compare the performance of WBC to other popular controllers and to carry out experimental validation of the designed control laws. A mathematical model is developed for an upper stage accelerating rocket moving in a single plane. Fuel sloshing is represented by an equivalent mechanical pendulum model. A wave-based controller is designed for the upper stage AVUM of the European launcher Vega. In numerical simulations the controller successfully suppresses the sloshing motion. A major advantage of the strategy is that no measurement of the pendulum states (sloshing motion) is required.

[1] Haeussermann W.: Developments in the field of automatic guidance and control of rockets. Journal of Guidance, Control, and Dynamics, 4(3), 225-239, May 1981.

[2] Reyhanoglu M.: Modeling and Control of Space Vehicles with Fuel Slosh Dynamics. 2004.

[3] O’Connor W.J.: Excellent control of flexible systems. Control, pages 6181-6186, 2005.

[4] O’Connor W.J., Lang D.: Position Control of Flexible Robot Arms Using Mechanical Waves. Journal of Dynamic Systems, Measurement, and Control, 120(3), 334, 1998.

[5] O’Connor W.J., Fumagalli A.: Refined Wave-Based Control Applied to Nonlinear, Bending, and Slewing Flexible Systems. Journal of Applied Mechanics, 76(4), 041005, 2009.

[6] O’Connor W.J.: A Gantry Crane Problem Solved. Journal of Dynamic Systems, Measurement, and Control, 125(4), 569, 2003.

[7] Dodge F.T.: The New ”Dynamic Behavior of Liquids in Moving Containers”. Southwest Research Institute, 2000.

[8] O’Connor W.J.: Wave-like modelling of cascaded, lumped, flexible systems with an arbitrarily moving boundary. Journal of Sound and Vibration, 330(13), 3070-3083, 2011.

[9] Perez E.: Vega User’s Manual, Issue 3, Revision 0.(3), 188, 2006.

Archive of Mechanical Engineering

The Journal of Committee on Machine Building of Polish Academy of Sciences

Journal Information

CiteScore 2016: 0.44

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2016: 0.162
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2016: 0.459

Cited By


All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 211 174 5
PDF Downloads 118 109 5