Distributed Spacecraft Autonomy
Presenting Author: Sreeja Nag
Organization: Bay Area Environmental Research Institute
The Distributed Spacecraft project is developing a suite of software tools that enable an operator to command/receive data from a swarm as a single entity, enable a swarm to autonomously coordinate its actions via distributed decision making and reactive closed-loop control, and model swarm behavior in the presence of anomalies or failures. Our use case is the mapping of the electron density of the ionosphere using radio tomography by coordinating the selection of appropriate GPS channels, and recording TEC measurements. DSA will be demonstrated onboard the NASA Ames Starling mission – a swarm of four small, LEO spacecraft, scheduled to launch in 2021. We will also perform a ground demonstration with simulated and hardware-in-the-loop elements, to validate the tools for controlling swarms of up to 100 assets.