Formation control strategies for a separated spacecraft interferometer

Andrew Robertson*, Gokhan Inalhan, Jonathan P. How

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)


Formation flying of multiple spacecraft is an enabling technology for future space science missions such as separated spacecraft interferometers. Controllers designed for these multi-vehicle fleets must address many high- and low-level tasks, and will become very complicated for large fleets. As such, this work describes ongoing research to investigate the precise sensing and control of a distributed spacecraft interferometer using a layered approach based on GPS and laser metrology. In particular, it focuses on the design of low-level controllers within several candidate control architectures, and analyzes how well these controllers perform on basic formations. Initial experimental results are presented on a three vehicle formation flying testbed executing station-keeping and rigid body maneuvers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4142-4147
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the American Control Conference
Publication statusPublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of the 1999 American Control Conference (99ACC) - San Diego, CA, USA
Duration: 2 Jun 19994 Jun 1999


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