Control over the deployment of an orbital tether system of great length


Control of deploying an extended tether system into the vertical position is considered in the paper. It is assumed that in the initial state the system consisting of two space vehicles moves in a circular Earth orbit. We propose nominal control programs ensuring the deployment of the system to a predetermined length and taking into account the restrictions on the speed of tether and force in the control mechanism. To construct nominal deployment programs a mathematical model of the system’s motion in the orbital moving coordinate system is used. The model takes into account the peculiarities of the problem. We assess the operability of the proposed programs of deployment according to the mathematical model of controlled motion of the orbital tether system with distributed parameters recorded in the geocentric coordinate system. To perform test calculations a linear regulator that provides feedback on the length and speed of the tether deployment is used. 

About the authors

Ch. Wang

Northwestern Polytechnic University, Xi’an

Author for correspondence.


Ph.D., Associate Professor of School of Automation

Yu. M. Zabolotnov

Samara National Research University


Russian Federation

Doctor of Science (Engineering)
Professor of the Department of Software Systems


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