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Cubesat solar sail attitude determination and control system hardware design and orbital analysis

Lappas, V, Adeli, N, Visagie, L, Theodorou, T, Fernandez, J and Steyn, WH (2010) Cubesat solar sail attitude determination and control system hardware design and orbital analysis AIAA/AAS Astrodynamics Specialist Conference 2010.

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A Cubesat mission with a deployable solar sail of 5 meter by 5 meter in a sun-synchronous low earth orbit is analyzed to demonstrate solar sailing using active attitude stabilization of the sail panel. The sail panel is kept parallel to the orbital plane to minimize aerodynamic drag and optimize the orbit inclination change caused by the solar pressure force normal to the sail surface. The control system employs a 3-axis magnetometer, a single MEMS rate sensor and miniaturized CMOS sun and nadir sensors for attitude sensing. Three magnetic torquers aligned with the spacecraft principle axis as well as a novel 2-dimensional translation stage separating the spacecraft bus from the sail serve as the attitude actuators. It is shown through realistic simulation tests that the proposed control system will be able to stabilize the sail panel to within ± 2° in all attitude angles during the sunlit part of the orbit when solar sailing is possible. Orbital analysis shows that the propulsion effect of solar radiation pressure can be demonstrated by an almost 2 degree change in orbital inclination for a 3kg Cubesat with a 25m2 sail. © 2010 by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Inc. All rights reserved.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Surrey research (other units)
Authors :
Lappas, V
Adeli, N
Fernandez, J
Steyn, WH
Date : 1 December 2010
DOI : 10.2514/6.2010-8135
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 17 May 2017 12:57
Last Modified : 24 Jan 2020 23:09

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