Simulation of Guidance, Navigation and Control Systems

For the development and verification of guidance, navigation and control systems (GNC systems), models of the system dynamics of space vehicles, the expected environmental conditions and disturbances, as well as sensor and actuator models are indispensable tools.

The Department of Guidance, Navigation and Control has developed a simulation library comprised of dynamics, disturbance, sensor and actuator models. These models are modular and configurable for various intended uses. The models of library are used individually or in combination to create simulations for

  • alternative concept studies for GNC systems,
  • assessment of system performance,
  • reconstructing flight data for mission data analysis as well as
  • hardware-in-the-loop tests for the verification of GNC systems.
Simulation built from HPS modules for the formation flight of satellites.

All library modules are included in the High Performance Satellite Dynamics Simulator (HPS). They are developed in collaboration with the Center of Applied Space Technology and Microgravity (ZARM) at the University of Bremen. HPS serves as a universal simulation library that is used for different projects and is improved or expanded where necessary.

For testing and verification of GNC systems using hardware-in-the-loop tests, the GNC department runs several labs and test facilities featuring simulation, test and verification platforms. Additionally, the department can make use of a high-performance computer for numeric simulations.