TR2018-117

Low-thrust GTO-to-GEO trajectory optimization and tracking



In this work, we consider the problem of low-thrust GTO-to-GEO osculating trajectory optimization and tracking. We exploit analytical solutions available in the averaged planar problem and use homotopy methods to obtain fuel- and time-optimal osculating trajectories using direct numerical optimal control tool GPOPS-II. We employ an attitude controller for tracking the thrust vector profile obtained from the optimal trajectories, while maintaining desired solar panel alignment. We simulate the operation of our controller numerically using MATLAB and the high-fidelity Systems Tool Kit (STK) software, and show satisfactory tracking performance of the controller.