Laser Tracking, Digital Control, Controller Implementation, Control Systems, Simulation
Laser tracking systems are an important aspect of the NASA space program, in particular for conducting research in relation to satellites and space port launch vehicles. Often, launches are conducted at remote sites which require all of the test equipment, including the laser tracking systems, to be portable. Portable systems are more susceptible to environmental disturbances which affect the overall tracking resolution, and consequently, the resolution of any other experimental data being collected at any given time. This research characterizes the optical coupling between two systems in a Mobile Experimental Laser Tracking system and evaluates several control solutions to minimize disturbances within this coupling. A simulation of the optical path was developed in an extensible manner such that different control systems could be easily implemented. For an initial test, several PID controllers were utilized in parallel in order to control mirrors in the optical coupling. Despite many limiting factors of the hardware, a simple proportional control performed to expectations. Although a system implementation was never field tested, the simulation results provide the necessary insight to develop the system further. Recommendations were made for future system modifications which would allow an even higher tracking resolution.
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Master of Science in Computer Engineering (M.S.Cp.E.)
College of Engineering and Computer Science
Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Rhodes, Matthew, "Digital Controller Implementation For Disturbance Rejection In The Optical Coupling Of A Mobile Experimental Laser Tracking Systems" (2006). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1097.