Aerospace Centre of Excellence presentsInternational Workshop on Satellite Constellations & Formation Flying

16-19 July 2019

Download the pdf of the detailed IWSCFF-19 Technical Programme.

The workshop will be held over four days, and will include a mix of regular presentations, poster sessions and key note speakers. The workshop presentations will also be online, allowing attendees and presenters to connect live, and to view earlier talks.

An industrial expo area will available to companies, together with a dedicated concurrent engineering facility to run demos and tutorials.

Social events are also planned for the evenings, including a welcome reception on Jul 17th, and the conference gala dinner on Jul 18th. 


9:00-10:00 Breakfast and Registration
10:00-11:00 Machine Learning and Intelligent Control – Dr Edmondo Minisci
Artificial intelligence (AI) as a field of research and development emerged in parallel with the development of the theory of automatic control, starting after WW2, with the first major applications in computing and information science. Today, both AI and automatic control have reached a level of stability and maturity, which, coupled with the sharp increase in possibilities of computer technology (both hardware and software), can lead to a rethinking of theory and practice of Intelligent Control. IC is again, after a period of neglect linked to various failures and unsuccessful attempts, the answer for control systems that have to ensure their optimality, functional and operational reliability, efficiency, fault tolerance and survivability when: 1) there is a lack of a priori information about the control object and objectives, and external environment, 2) there is a big number of aleatory factors that cannot be taken into account deterministically, and 3) there could be degradation (from failures, accidents) or necessity of targeted reconfiguration. This tutorial will give an overview of IC techniques and approaches in various fields of engineering applications.
11:00-12:00 Using Networks for Constellation Responsiveness, Resilience, and Data Routing – Dr Chris Lowe, Dr Ciara McGrathDr Ruaridh Clark
There are a number of obvious reasons for making the change from launching one or two large, highly capable satellites, to instead deploying tens or hundreds of small (perhaps less capable) satellites; increased revisit rate, higher resilience and distributed data collection are but a few. However, the use of mega-constellations also poses challenges, such as higher launch costs and increased orbit congestion. In this tutorial, we investigate the use of graph theoretical techniques to design agile, inter-connected satellite constellations and ask can we do more with less?
12:00-13:30 Lunch
13:30-14:30 Legal aspects of the use of space, space debris and in orbit servicing – Dr Saskia Vermeylen
Despite a well-established Corpus Iurus Spatialis we are lacking binding international law to regulate the environmental impact of human space activities. This tutorial will explore non-binding international initiatives that are currently in use to protect and enhance the safe, secure and sustainable use of outer space. This includes: (i) an analysis of space debris mitigation guidelines and the proposed International Code of Conduct of Outer Space Activities, (ii) legal assessment of remediation strategies, and (iii) ethical considerations for establishing an international treaty for regulating and reducing space debris in outer space.
14:30-15:00 Break
15:00-16:00 Practical methods for Multi-Objective Optimal Control – Prof Massimiliano Vasile
Multi-Objective Optimal Control is a relatively recent area of research and development that aims at solving optimal control problems with multiple competing objectives. Solving an MOOC problem is computationally much more complex and expensive than solving a single objective optimal control problem (OCP) but is extremely useful as it provides an optimal trade off among a wide range of alternative solutions. The literature offers a good body of work on most theoretical aspects of MOOCP and a few practical methods for their solution. The tutorial will introduce the MOOCP formulation and the main differences between an MOOCP and a standard optimal control problem. It will then present a couple of practical solution approaches and some theoretical aspects related to the local convergence of one of them. A few examples of applications will conclude the tutorial.
16:00-18:00 Networking & Exhibit: Ocean, Air & Space
Industrial Expo
Level 2, TIC
08:00-09:00 Registration
09:00-10:00 Keynote: Prof Simone d'Amico, Stanford University
Autonomous Guidance, Navigation and Control for Miniaturized Distributed Space Systems
10:00-10:30 Breakfast
10:30-11:30 Session A1: Formation Flying Control (Chair: Simone D'Amico)
  • Cluster control system
    Michael Paluszek, Princeton Satellite Systems, USA
  • Computationally efficient study of highly perturbed spacecraft formation dynamics via approximation
    Ethan Burnett, University of Colorado, USA
  • Spacecraft formation and orbit control using attitude-dependent solar radiation pressure
    Ethan Burnett, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
  • Sequentially distributed attitude guidance across a spacecraft formation
    Mar Cols-Margenet, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
11:30-11:45 Break
11:45-13:00 Session A2: Formation Flying Control (Chair: Jean-Sebastien Ardaens)
  • Precise line-of-sight modelling for angles-only relative navigation
    Gabriella Gaias, Politecnico di Milano, Italy
  • Navigation of a formation of nanospacecraft at a binary asteroid with TOA and FOA measurements
    Massimiliano Vasile, University of Strathclyde, UK 
  • Spacecraft formation feed-forward control via differential drag using relative orbital elements
    Ben Larbi Mohamed Khalil, TU Braunschweig, Germany
  • Charge-product control approach to electrostatic leader-follower in LEO plasma wakes
    Jordan Maxwell, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
  • Electrostatically actuated deployment for close-proximity leader-follower formation in LEO plasma wakes
    Jordan Maxwell, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
13:00-14:30 Lunch
14:30-15:45 Session B1: Formation Flying Control & Instrumentation (Chair: Gabriella Gaias)
  • Local information based organization of distributed spacecraft swarm using two-impulse rendezvous Wen Feng, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China
  • Radio interferometry in a heliocentric earth-trailing orbit: A fuel optimal virtual model reference adaptive orbit control approach to a heterogeneous swarm with unknown dynamics
    Alisa Nevinskaia, TU Delft, Hyperion Technologies, The Netherlands
  • Networked model predictive control for satellite formation flying
    Damiana Catanoso, Stanford University, USA
  • Magnetic attitude control for GRACE-like missions
    Yaroslav Mashtakov, Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics of RAS, Russia
  • Proba-3 shadow position sensors subsystem: metrology concept and measurement budget 
    Davide Loreggia, INAF, Italy
15:45-16:00 Break
16:00-17:00 Session B2: Formation Flying Control & Instrumentation (Chair: Hanspeter Schaub)
  • Metrology on-board PROBA-3: the shadow position sensors subsystem
    Vladimiro Noce, INAF, Italy
  • The in-flight calibration of the shadow position sensors, optical metrology system of the ESA/PROBA-3 formation flying mission
    Gerardo Capobianco, INAF, Italy
  • ISL multi-service satellite transceiver for constellation management and formation flying
    Davide Silva, Space Engineering SpA, Italy
  • Decentralisation results and sufficient stability conditions for uncoordinated formation and constellation manoeuvres
    Marcus Holzinger, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
18:00-19:30 Welcome Reception at the Glasgow City Chambers
8:00-9:00 Registration
9:00-10:00 Keynote: Prof Moriba Jah, University of Texis at Austin
Impact of Large Constellations on the Space Environment and Related Space Traffic Management
10:00-10:30 Breakfast
10:30-11:30 Session C1: Constellations & Space Traffic Management (Chair: Moriba Jah)
  • Towards a future European Space Agency constellation coordination system ESA-CCS operational tool
    Pedro Jose Jurado Lozano, ESA
  • Collision risk assessment for the proposed large constellations of satellites during their entire lifecycle
    Alexis Petit, IFAC-CNR, Sesto Fiorentino, Italy
  • Introducing the law games -- predicting legal liability and fault in satellite operations
    Dinz Dinsley, NORSS, UK
  • Trade-off study on large constellation de-orbiting with low-thrust and de-orbiting balloons
    Simeng Huang, Politecnico di Milano, Italy
11:30-11:45 Break
11:45-13:00 Session C2: Constellations & Space Traffic Management (Chair: Timothy Maclay)
  • New three dimensional phased array antenna for satellite constellations
    Nobuyuki Kaya, Wave Arrays, Japan
  • Design and practice of global teenagers popular science satellites constellation project
    Gang Zhang, Beijing SpaceArk Technology Corp. Ltd, PR China
13:00-14:30 Lunch
14:30-15:30 Keynote: Dr Timothy Maclay, OneWeb
Space Sustainability in the Era of Large-Scale Operations in LEO: What’s the Problem?
15:30-16:30 Session D1: Mission Analysis & Design (Chair: Eric Joffre)
  • Future satellite constellations and space missions in the context of UKSA licensing and regulation
    Toby Harris, UK Space Agency
  • Formation reconfiguration optimisation for the IRASSI space interferometer
    Luisa Buinhas, Universität der Bundeswehr München, Germany
  • Analysis of responsive satellite manoeuvres using graph theoretical techniques
    Ciara McGrath, University of Strathclyde, UK
  • Proba-3 formation flying mission
    Damien Galano, ESA
16:30-17:30 Session D2: Mission Analysis & Design (Chair: Olivier de Weck)
  • ITASat-2: The first nanosatellite formation flying Brazilian mission
    Willer Gomes dos Santos, Instituto Tecnológico de Aeronáutica, Brazil
  • LISA: heliocentric formation design for the laser interferometer space antenna mission
    Eric Joffre, Airbus
  • Flight results for the formation initialization and control of the HE360 pathfinder mission
    Niels Roth, University of Toronto, Canada
  • Investigation of orbital stability around asteroids with automatic domain splitting
    Jianlang Feng, University of Strathclyde, UK
18:30-22:00  Conference gala dinner at the Glasgow Science Centre
8:00-9:00 Registration
9:00-10:00 Keynote: Prof Colin McInnes, University of Glasgow
Dynamics and Control of Swarms of Chipsats
10:00-10:30 Breakfast
10:30-11:30  Session E1: AI, Machine Learning, Simulation and Optimisation (Chair: Roberto Furfaro)
  • Optimization of low-thrust reconfiguration of formation flying using relaxed stochastic terminal conditions
    Liqiang Hou, Shanghai Jiaotong University, PR China
  • Propulsionless planar phasing of small satellites using deep reinforcement learning
    Rasit Abay, UNSW Canberra, Australia
  • Distributed vision-based multi-target pose estimation for cooperative spacecraft swarms
    Kai Matsuka, California Institute of Technology, USA
  • Comparative assessment of image processing algorithms for the pose estimation of uncooperative spacecraft
    Lorenzo Pasqualetto Cassinis, TU Delft, The Netherlands
11:30-11:45 Break
11:30-13:15 Session E2: AI, Machine Learning, Simulation and Optimisation (Chair: Colin McInnes)
  • Knowledge-based self-reconfiguration and self-aware demonstration for modular satellite assembly
    Mark Post, University of York, UK
  • Orbit design of an autonomous space-based SSA swarm: distributed deep learning at the edge
    Lorraine Weis, L3 Technologies, USA
  • A self-adaptive magnetic charged system search for time-suboptimal formation flying maneuvers
    Andrea D’Ambrosio, Sapienza Università di Roma, Italy
  • Autonomous spacecraft formation flight guidance via ELM-based deep reinforcement learning
    Roberto Furfaro, University of Arizona, USA
  • Fast angles-only initial relative orbit determination for onboard application
    Jean-Sebastien Ardaens, DLR, Germany
  • Lower bounds on delta-v costs for traveling satellite problems
    Chandrakanth Venigalla, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
13:15-14:30 Lunch
14:30-15:45 Session F1: Formation Flying Design, Maintenance & Reconfiguration (Chair: Jiaglang Feng)
  • Formation flying reconfiguration manoeuvres via environmental forces in highly elliptical orbits
    Rebecca La Norcia, Sapienza Università di Roma, Italy
  • Optimal design of spacecraft formations in Lissajous orbits
    Sergey Shestakov, Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics of RAS, Russia
  • Passively safe relative orbit configurations over long time intervals for heterogeneously distributed spacecraft clusters
    Burak Yaglioglu, Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey
  • A review of satellite constellation reconfiguration and its applications
    Olivier de Weck, MIT, USA
  • Maneuvering of spacecraft formations using a linearized lambert algorithm 
    Jay McMahon, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
15:45-16:00 Break
16:00-17:30 Session F2: Formation Flying Design, Maintenance & Reconfiguration (Chair: Jay McMahon)
  • Small satellite formation flying application using the Basilisk astrodynamics software architecture
    Simon van Overeem, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
  • Walker constellations and other symmetrical and non-symmetrical constellations in the problem of Earth coverage: Theoretical relations and capabilities
    Yury Razoumny, RUDN University, Russia
  • Tetrahedron formation maintenance via atmospheric drag control
    Yaroslav Mashtakov, Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics of RAS, Russia
  • Formation flight relative motion control using solar sail
    Yaroslav Mashtakov, Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics of RAS, Russia
  • Spacecraft swarm dynamics and control about asteroids
    Corinne Lippe, Stanford University, USA
  • Decentrilized control of nanosatellites spatial distribution in the swarm in LEO using magnetorquers
    Danil Ivanov, Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics of RAS, Russia