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Optimization of powered aero-assisted maneuvers controlling the aerodynamic angles

Grant number: 19/26605-2
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctoral
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2020
Effective date (End): July 31, 2024
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Aerospace Engineering - Flight Dynamics
Principal Investigator:Rodolpho Vilhena de Moraes
Grantee:Jhonathan Orlando Murcia Piñeros
Host Institution: Instituto de Ciência e Tecnologia (ICT). Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP). Campus São José dos Campos. São José dos Campos , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:16/24561-0 - On the relevance of small bodies in orbital dynamics, AP.TEM
Associated scholarship(s):22/15564-6 - Model predictive control for optimal guidance of autonomous spaceplanes on powered aerogravity assist maneuvers, BE.EP.PD


The gravity assisted maneuvers were development to change the spacecraft trajectory using an approach to a massive body, like a planet. The planet gravity field transfers energy to the trajectory, resulting in changes in the direction and velocity of the spacecraft. These maneuvers save propellant and reduce the mission cost. Also, it can be implemented to increase the decay in SmallSats in LEO. The Voyagers spacecraft are the best examples of the application of the maneuver. Atmospheric planets allow the trajectory changes by the gravity influence and by the aerodynamic forces like lift and drag, to increase or reduce the gravity assists effects. The new maneuver requires a spacecraft with specific shape to hypersonic flight, and with the control of the angle of attack and blank angle it is possible the control of the aerodynamic forces with the goal of optimizing the energy changes. Another control method is the implementation of an impulse with the spacecraft propulsion system. The objective of this research is to project an algorithm to obtain the optimum control system for a waverider spacecraft that can maximize the flight path energy in planetary atmospheres during a powered aero-assisted gravity maneuver. The algorithm will be implemented in numerical simulations to find optimal maneuvers from the boundary conditions. To model mathematically the trajectory, it is necessary to start with the spacecraft on a flight around the Sun and close to the target planet. The body with the largest mass is the Sun, the secondary body is the planet in a circular orbit around the Sun and the third body is the spacecraft with negligible mass. The system is modeled by the restricted problem of three bodies with the addition of the atmospheric forces. Variations in ballistic and lift coefficients, impulse magnitude, impulse application angle, angle of approach, bank angle, altitudes and angle of attack control will be studied to generate the trajectories with larger variations in energy. These maneuvers shorten the times involved in a mission and can increase or decrease the effects of the gravitational assistance. (AU)

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
MURCIA PINEROS, JHONATHAN O.; BERTACHINI DE ALMEIDA PRADO, ANTONIO F.; DOS SANTOS, WALTER ABRAHAO; DE MORAES, RODOLPHO VILHENA. Applying the perturbative integral in aeromaneuvers around Mars to calculate the cost. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, v. 12, n. 1, p. 10-pg., . (16/24561-0, 19/26605-2)

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