Aerospace Centre of Excellence Advanced Space Concepts Laboratory
The Advanced Space Concepts Lab is a cross-cutting research unit that aims to perform and lead research on advanced space concepts and technologies, addressing the challenges of future space missions.
The Advanced Space Concepts Lab (ASCL) is structured around key areas including spaceflight mechanics, GNC & autonomy, and space systems. The lab is led by Prof Massimiliano Vasile and has grown to include over 20 researchers.
ASCL is developing advanced concepts and current solutions from nano-satellites to self-assembling spacecraft, from asteroid manipulation, debris removal to motorised tethers and advanced forms of propulsion including solar sails, laser propulsions, micro-electric propulsion, from hardware in the loop testing and validation of new payloads to new approaches to space systems engineering and concurrent engineering methodologies for end to end mission design.
A diverse spectrum of key expertise includes new types of orbits for space applications, analytical and semi-analytical solutions for long term orbit propagation, high precision high fidelity orbit propagation, trajectory design and optimisation, constellation deployment and reconfiguration, swarm dynamics, fault tolerant distributed autonomous navigation and control, proximity navigation, information fusion for autonomy, autonomous planning and scheduling.
ASCL has been awarded several key research projects from European Commission, and works closely with European Space Agency and UK Space Agency, as well as space industry, and will continue to play its significant roles in both academia and industry.
Prof Massimiliano Vasile
Director, Aerospace Centre of Excellence
Director of Research, Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering
Main research interests include space systems engineering, space traffic management & space situtational awareness, computational optimisation, robust design and optimisation under uncertainty exploring the limits of computer science at solving highly complex problems in science and engineering.
Prof Matthew Cartmell
Professor in Nonlinear Dynamics
Research interests in modelling of nonlinear dynamical systems, methods of approximate analytical solution to ODE based models, application of the principles of nonlinear dynamics to problems in structural vibration, energy harvesting, flexible rotors, momentum exchange space tethers and novel propulsion concepts for spacecraft
Dr Jinglang Feng
Lecturer and Chancellor’s Fellow
Research interests in modelling of in nonlinear dynamical system, specifically in solving spacecraft orbital motion around small solar system bodies with analytical and numerical methods and the corresponding stability analysis, resonant dynamics, propagation and analysis of model uncertainties in space mission design, applications of AI algorithms to astrodynamics and space mission design.
Dr Christie Maddock
Lecturer in Aerospace Transport Systems
Co-Director, Future Air-Space Transportation Technologies Laboratory
Research interests in dynamics and control, trajectory optimisation and system design optimisation for aerospace transport systems including space access systems, spaceplanes and long range airliners
Dr Stuart Grey
Teaching Fellow in Aerospace Engineering
Research interests in precise orbit determination of the entire space debris population, in particular how non-conservative forces effect the shape, attitude and orbit of debris