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Safe Picosatellite Release from a Small Satellite Carrier

Wermuth, Martin and Gaias, Gabriella and D'Amico, Simone (2015) Safe Picosatellite Release from a Small Satellite Carrier. Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets, 52 (5), pp. 1338-1347. American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). DOI: [10.2514/1.A33036] ISSN 0022-4650

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Official URL: http://arc.aiaa.org/doi/pdf/10.2514/1.A33036


The Berlin Infrared Optical System satellite, which is scheduled for launch in 2016, will carry onboard a picosatellite and release it through a spring mechanism. After separation, it will perform proximity maneuvers in formation with the picosatellite solely based on optical navigation. Therefore, it is necessary to keep the distance of the two spacecraft within certain boundaries. This is especially challenging because the employed standard spring mechanism is designed to impart a separation velocity to the picosatellite. A maneuver strategy is developed in the framework of relative orbital elements. The goal is to prevent loss of formation while mitigating collision risk. The main design driver is the performance uncertainty of the release mechanism. The analyzed strategy consists of two maneuvers: the separation itself, and a drift-reduction maneuver of the Berlin Infrared Optical System satellite after 1.5 revolutions. The selected maneuver parameters are validated in a Monte Carlo simulation. It is demonstrated that both the risk of formation evaporation (separation of more than 50 km) as well as the eventuality of a residual drift toward the carrier are below 0.1%. In the latter case, formation safety is guaranteed by a passive safety achieved through a proper relative eccentricity/inclination vector separation.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/98215/
Document Type:Article
Title:Safe Picosatellite Release from a Small Satellite Carrier
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthors ORCID iD
D'Amico, Simonedamicos (at) stanford.eduUNSPECIFIED
Date:13 August 2015
Journal or Publication Title:Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
DOI :[10.2514/1.A33036]
Page Range:pp. 1338-1347
Publisher:American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA)
Keywords:Picosatellite release, In-orbit injection, Picosatellite orbit deployer, Formation safety, Relative orbital elements
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space Technology
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R SY - Technik für Raumfahrtsysteme
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Vorhaben Infrastruktur und Unterstützung für Raumflugbetrieb
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Space Operations and Astronaut Training
Deposited By: Gaias, Gabriella
Deposited On:15 Sep 2015 09:13
Last Modified:08 Mar 2018 18:45

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