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Date of Award

2007

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Space Science

Department

Physical Sciences

Committee Chair

Dr. Mahmut Reyhanoglu

Committee Member

Dr. Bereket Berhane

Committee Member

Dr. Jason Aufdenberg

Abstract

The problem of formation control of multiple spacecraft using the virtual structure approach is studied. The thesis first summarizes the progress made in the area of spacecraft formation control and then provides an overview of the virtual structure method. Modifying earlier established control design techniques, new feedback laws are constructed to control both the rotational and translational motion of a group of spacecraft. Several computer simulations are performed to illustrate the effectiveness of the modified control laws. The ephemeris and attitude data files generated via Matlab are exported to Satellite Tool Kit (STK) to create 3D animations. Various formation scenarios are modeled and the formation control strategies studied in this thesis are applied for switching from one formation scenario to another.

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