Earth observation “Auriga” small spacecraft attitude control and stabilization system

Dynamics, ballistics, movement control of flying vehicles


Rozin P. E.

Dauria – Aerospace, 100, Novaya st., Moscow, Technopark Skolkovo, 143026, Russia



The paper describes the Earth observation «Auriga» small spacecraft attitude control and stabilization (ACSS) system. «Auriga» spacecraft has been under development since 2014 at Dauria Aerospace, based in Skolkovo, Moscow region.

The first part of the article presents the key parameters of ACSS measurement devices and actuators complied with requirements of ACSS on accuracy in three-axis stabilization mode. It also presents primary characteristics of the on-board autonomous ballistic task (6 meters accuracy for on-orbit position determination).

The second part of the article presents operation logic of on-board ACSS task for the three-axis stabilization mode. It shows that all operations can be presented as four sub-modes with different types of orientation program. At the end of the second part, information on the selected type of interpolation of the orientation program in one of the sub-modes is presented. The results of modeling show that spherical linear interpolation of quaternion is suitable for all types of rotations (except orbital orientation, which is calculated using autonomous ballistic task information) for «Auriga» spacecraft mission.

The third part of the paper presents the results of software-in-the-loop test for orbital orientation sub-mode. It shows, that all accuracy requirements confirmed with high level of margin, provided that at least one star tracker is operable. Without an operable star tracker, the «Auriga» spacecraft keeps stabilization using MEMS-gyro information. Since the gyro generates high-level noise, it was shown that it was impossible to comply with accuracy requirements for more than 1000 sec. But in other orientation modes, where accuracy requirements are not so severe and star tracker is inoperable, gyro becomes very important measurement device.


Earth observation small spacecraft “Auriga”, three-axis orientation, on-board control system task software operation logic


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