Navigation of Orbiter from MECO to the ISS - Adaptive Conditional Feedback Control
An interesting aspect of the Shuttle and Orbiter's
trip to the orbit of the International Space Station is that it not piloted along
its path by one of the on-board human astronauts through much
of its journey but rather by a computer program,
consisting of a sequence of mainly predetermined amounts of thrust, thrust durations,
elevations, and azimuth values. It may be that some adjustments to these
values are made in the early stages of the flight by an on-board inertial guidance
system and in later stages by on-ground and ISS
derived data sent to Orbiter via satellites.
It appears that little factual information has been provided to the media on the navigation
of Orbiter from MECO to the ISS. As a result, navigation
in this chapter are invention.
The focus of this Chapter is on navigation
for that part of Orbiter's journey.
The first topic provides background information on the Shuttle, the ISS orbit, orbit
descriptors, the navigation system and Orbiter's engines.
The second topic provides more about the operation of our navigation control computers and feedback
control system, its usage and examples of some in-orbit maneuvers.
The third topic describes an ideal first-pass path to near rendezvous with the ISS
and a description of a delayed rendezvous. The topic concludes with a summary
of the attainments of Hands-On Math and an un-answered question for the viewer.
The topics of this chapter can be accessed by clicking their names.