Type of Document Master's Thesis Author Romanelli, Christopher C Author's Email Address email@example.com URN etd-05032006-104034 Title Software Simulation of an Unmanned Vehicle Performing Relative Spacecraft Orbits Degree Master of Science Department Aerospace and Ocean Engineering Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title Schaub, Hanspeter Committee Chair Hall, Christopher D. Committee Member Woolsey, Craig A. Committee Member Keywords
- Dynamic Simulation
- Dynamics and Control
- Orbit Simulation
Date of Defense 2006-04-27 Availability unrestricted AbstractThe challenge of sensing relative motion between vehicles is an important subject in the engineering
field in recent years. The associated applications range from spacecraft rendezvous
and docking to autonomous ground vehicle operations. The focus of this thesis is to develop
the simulation tools to examine this problem in the laboratory environment. More specifically,
the goal is to create a virtual unmanned ground vehicle that operates in the same
manner as an actual vehicle. This simulated vehicle allows for safely testing other software
or hardware components before application to the actual vehicle. In addition, the simulated
vehicle, in contrast to the real vehicle, is able to operate on different surfaces or even different
planets, with different gravitational accelerations. To accomplish this goal, the equations of
motion of a two-wheel driven unmanned vehicle are developed analytically. To study the
spacecraft application, the equations of motion for a spacecraft cluster are also developed.
These two simulations are implemented in a modular form using the UMBRA framework.
In addition, an interface between these two simulations is created for the unmanned vehicle
to mimic the translational motion of a spacecraft’s relative orbit. Finally, some of the
limitations and future improvements of the existing simulations are presented.
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