Station Keeping Strategy Test, Design and Optimization by Computer Simulation
Station keeping of a satellite within the narrow tolerance window prescribed for future geostationary missions requires careful design of a strategy for maneuver planning. The strategy has to consider the perturbing forces acting on the spacecraft, the configuration of the propulsion system, the constraints imposed on the maneuvers and all significant error sources. The general goal is to minimize the overall fuel consumption and the operational effort at the control center. The strategy design generally proceeds in the following steps: After evaluating the combined error budget in longitude and latitude, the remaining portion of the window is attributed to the deadbands of residual motion around the geostationary state. This, in turn, allows the scheduling of orbit corrections and the definition of the target orbits, whereby the constraints have to be taken in account. Once the target elements are known, the required velocity increments and maneuver times can be computed. This method of simply separating the budgets of errors and deadbands is fairly straightforward and requires little computational effort. It suffers, however, from.