The objectives of this course are to develop the general principles governing spacecraft proximity operations, rendezvous, and docking, and analyze the challenges associated with their operational implementation. Students will be introduced to topics such as near and far range rendezvous, natural motion circumnavigation (NMC), autonomous rendezvous guidance, and relative navigation using GPS and relative motion sensors. Practical mission constraints, including passive safety, collision avoidance, and sun illumination will be discussed. Applications from emerging areas including on-orbit servicing, in-space manufacturing/assembly/refueling, formation flying, active debris removal, close inspection, and logistics resupply to a cislunar human habitat will also be studied. Students are expected to be comfortable in programming with Matlab, Python or similar simulation platforms, and must have been exposed to the mathematical topics of Linear Algebra, Differential Equations, Calculus, and elementary Probability through prior coursework.
EN.675.600 Systems Engineering for Space; EN.675.601 Fundamentals of Engineering Space Systems I and EN.675.650 Mathematics for Space/ approval of the instructor.