Design and implementation of an attitude determination and control system for the AntelSat
Matias Tassano Ferres
Master thesis from Universidad de la República(Uruguay). Facultad de Ingeniería. IIE - Aug. 2015
Advisor: Pablo Monzón
Co-advisor: Juan Pechiar
Research Group(s): (unspecified)
Department(s): Telecomunicaciones, Sistemas y Control
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This thesis describes the design, analysis and construction of the Attitude Determination and Control System (ADCS) for the first Uruguayan nanosatellite, the AntelSat. The AntelSat project is a joint venture between the Electrical Engineering Institute (IIE) of Faculty of Engineering, Universidad de la República (UdelaR University) and Antel, the Uruguayan national telecommunications company. The satellite consists of a two-unit (2U) CubeSat, which implies that the ADCS is designed under tight mass, size, and energy constraints. In addition, these kind of satellites usually have limited sensing, computational and communication capabilities, motivating the need for autonomous and computationally efficient algorithms. Under these strict restraints, developing an effective attitude control system poses a significant challenge. As presented in this thesis, for the attitude determination section of the ADCS, data available from sensors is taken as inputs for the computation of an optimal quaternion estimator. The use of a quaternion implementation of an unscented Kalman filter is also discussed. Additionally, attitude control is based on magnetic actuation with magnetorquers being commanded by pulse width modulation. It is shown that the control system is able to achieve the detumbling of the satellite after separation from the launch interface using the reliable B-dot control law. Nadirpointing control is achieved with the use of a simple Linear Quadratic Regulator. Also pertinent is the simulation environment that was implemented to develop the attitude determination and control algorithms and also to validate their performance. ADCS hardware prototypes and flight versions that were designed and constructed are introduced

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