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A numerical approach to the problem of angles-only initial relative orbit determination in low earth orbit

Ardaens, Jean-Sebastien and Gaias, Gabriella (2019) A numerical approach to the problem of angles-only initial relative orbit determination in low earth orbit. Advances in Space Research, 63 (12), pp. 3884-3899. Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/j.asr.2019.03.001. ISSN 0273-1177.

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Official URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0273117719301620


A practical and effective numerical method is presented, aiming at solving the problem of initial relative orbit determination using solely line-of-sight measurements. The proposed approach exploits the small discrepancies which can be observed between a linear and a more advanced relative motion model. The method consists in systematically performing a series of least-squares adjustments at varying intersatellite distances in the vicinity of a family of collinear solutions coming from the linear theory. The solution presenting the smallest fitting residuals is then selected. The investigations specifically focus on the rendezvous in low Earth near-circular orbit with a noncooperative target. The objective is to determine the relative state of the formation using only bearing observations when the spacecraft are separated by a few dozen kilometers without any a priori additional information. The method is validated with flight data coming from the ARGON (2012) and AVANTI (2016) experiments. Both cases demonstrate that an observation time span of a few maneuver-free orbits is enough to compute a solution which can compete with Two-Line Elements in terms of accuracy.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/128382/
Document Type:Article
Title:A numerical approach to the problem of angles-only initial relative orbit determination in low earth orbit
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Journal or Publication Title:Advances in Space Research
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Page Range:pp. 3884-3899
Keywords:Angles-only navigation, Noncooperative rendezvous, Formation-flying, Flight demonstration, Initial orbit determination
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space System Technology
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R SY - Space System Technology
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Vorhaben Infrastruktur und Unterstützung für Raumflugbetrieb (old)
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Space Operations and Astronaut Training
Deposited By: Ardaens, Jean-Sebastien
Deposited On:12 Jul 2019 10:29
Last Modified:03 Nov 2023 09:14

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