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Industry’s Obligation for Mission Success. 19th AIAA Space Flight Mechanics Conference Dr. Alex Liang General Manager, Vehicle Systems Division. Vehicle Systems Division February 10, 2009. Outline. Perspective on Space A National Security Space View Point National Security Space Needs

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Industry’s Obligation for Mission Success

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Industry s obligation for mission success

Industry’s Obligationfor Mission Success

19th AIAA Space Flight Mechanics Conference

Dr. Alex Liang

General Manager, Vehicle Systems Division

Vehicle Systems Division

February 10, 2009



Perspective on Space

A National Security Space View Point

National Security Space Needs

Commitment to Enhancing Mission Success

Collective “Obligations”

Perspective on space

Perspective on Space

Space Pervades Every Aspect of our Nation

Commercial and Civil Applications: Enhances/Enables American Way of Life

Homeland Security

National Defense

Perspective cont space underpins elements of our national economy

Perspective (cont.) Space Underpins Elements of Our National Economy



Precision Farming


Precision Navigation





Remote Sensing

Package Tracking


Space Industrial Base


Satellite Launchers

Ground Equipment

Space enhances homeland security

SpaceEnhances Homeland Security

Border and Transportation Security

Boston, DigitalGlobe

Athens, DigitalGlobe

Emergency Preparation and Response

Special Event Protection

HAZMAT Tracking

Missile Warning and Defense

A national security space viewpoint

A National Security Space Viewpoint

Commercial space is a derivative of National Security Space

World satellite industry revenue has grown an average of 13% every year since 1996 (US revenue over $40B)

In contrast, budget for National Security Space will likely remain flat for coming years

Increasing budget will remain an uphill battle

The American public ranks engineer as the 10th most prestigious profession (below priesthood, but above lawyers and Members of Congress)

100% success for each new mission is paramount

For National Security and preservation of the American way of life

Capabilities required for national security space

Capabilities Required for National Security Space

  • Space Vehicle

  • Pre-acquired/storable

  • Rapid mating

  • Consumables loading

  • Built in test ground, on-orbit

  • Launch Vehicle

  • Streamlined countdown

  • Built in test

  • Storable propellants

  • Horizontal integration

  • Performance margin

  • Mission planning

  • Range

  • Range safety

  • Standard interfaces and telemetry

  • Flight termination system

  • Precision weather

  • Users


  • Train/exercise

  • Seamless task, post,

  • process, use

  • C2

  • Network connectivity

Enhancements in all segments are required

Commitment to mission success an aerospace perspective

Commitment to Mission SuccessAn Aerospace Perspective

Focus on mission success by

Ensuring the application of engineering “best practices,”“lessons learned” in all phases of the system acquisition process

Providing the world class technical capabilities for

System architecture assessment

Concept development

Engineering analyses, simulation, diagnostics

Dod life cycle acquisition process

DOD Life Cycle Acquisition Process




Concept Refinement


System Development& Demonstration

Production & Deployment

Operations& Support

System Life Cycle Acquisition Process

Combat Developer

Materiel Developer

PM - Total Life Cycle Systems Manager

Air Force Materiel Command

Acquisition Framework

Less Ability to Influence LCC (85% of Cost Decisions Made)

High Ability to Influence LCC (70-75% of Cost Decisions Made)

Little Ability to Influence LCC (90-95% of Cost Decisions Made)

Minimum Ability to Influence LCC(95% of Cost Decisions Made)



28% Life Cycle Cost

72% Life Cycle Cost

Points A, B, and C at the top of the figure represent Milestones A, B, and C. LCC, life cycle cost.

Figure S-1, Page 2, Pre-Milestone A and Early-Phase Systems Engineering SOURCE: Richard Andrews, 2003, An Overview of Acquisition Logistics. Fort Belvoir, VA: Defense Acquisition University

Industry s obligation for mission success

Approach: Through all phases of acquisition, the applicable analytical, simulation and experimental capabilities are fully utilized to enhance eventual mission success

Inclusive of all cognizant technical disciplines

Encompasses every launch vehicle, every DOD satellite

Fundamental Role in Mission Success

  • RFI and Proposal Evaluation

    • SPEC & STD (e.g.1540E)

    • System performance

    • Feasibilities, technology check


    • Independent validations of intended designs

  • CDR

    • Independent validation ofdesigns and performance at component/box,subsystemand system levels

    • Follow-up with pedigree, acceptance monitoring

  • Post CDR/LRR

    • Anomaly resolutions

    • Deviation dispositions

    • Testing compliance (thermal vac, vib/modal survey, acoustics at all levels)

    • Flight software validation

  • On-orbit Support

    • Real time deployments

    • Anomaly workarounds

  • Post Flight

    • Performance eval, model validations

    • Anomaly investigations (if applicable)

Industry s obligation for mission success

Engineering visualization

Trajectory and orbit optimization

Guidance systems

Flight controls and avionics

Launch range safety


Mechanical systems

Vibration/dynamic environments

Example of Core Technical Disciplines

  • Structures

  • Propulsion systems

  • Aerodynamics

  • Thermal modeling

  • Explosives/ordnance

  • Satellite on-orbit control, support and pointing

  • Applications

. . . and MANY more!

Multi burn orbit transfer optimization

Multi-Burn Orbit Transfer Optimization


Multi-burn trajectory simulation

State of the art optimization

Detailed dynamics modeling

Flexible architecture


Real time missionsupport

Mission design(WGS, AEHFSBIRS-HI, NRO)

Spacecraft orbitmaneuvers

Upper stagesimulation

8 Burn WGS Orbit Transfer

Guidance optimization

Guidance Optimization


Validate that requirementswill be met

Mission design

Flight software

  • Approach

    • 3DOF/6DOF simulation analyses

    • Mission specific data base

    • Autopilot performance/stability analyses

    • 3-sigma dispersion/margin analyses

    • Interagency comparisons

  • Payoff

    • High launch reliability – strong knowledge base

    • High confidence for day-of-launch

Avionics risk assessment

Avionics Risk Assessment


Hardware-in-the-loop simulations provide stress tests:

Guidance and navigation control

Sequencing and redundancy

Spacecraft pointing


Certified tools for launch and on-orbit operations

Preparedness for anomalies

Position Magnitude

From launch through on-orbit life

Vehicle readiness



Flight computer

Dynamic environmental testing

Dynamic Environmental Testing


Verify design and test requirements

Derive acoustic, vibration, and shock environments

Development testing

Qualification testing

Acceptance testing

Hardware buyoff

Acoustic testing for engine burn and transonic flight

Design requirements due to launch and on-orbit events

Titan IV Launch Tower View – T-0 Umbilical Detachment


Vibration testing for structure borne vibration

Impulse testing for separation shock

Space structures

Space Structures


Design and qualification

Spacecraft structures

Subsystem supports

Opto-mechanical structures

Deployable structures

Finite element analyses

Strength and stiffness

Thermal distortion and stability

Test program development


Goals and requirements

Load case development

Technology assessments

Roadmap development

Flight/ground demonstrations

Conceptual design

DMSP Finite Element Model

Deployable Optics Test Bed Concept

Example loads events atmospheric flight

Example Loads Events: Atmospheric Flight


Due to relative wind and non-zero angle of attack, which varies slowly relative to the fundamental mode frequency of the LV


Rapid changes in winds cause changes in local angle of attack


Due to local turbulence and shocks



Autopilot noise

Mechanical noise (engine gimbal friction)

Other contributors considered in analyses

Lack of wind persistence



Buffet (Shocks)



Liquid propulsion

Liquid Propulsion

Launch support capabilities

Engine performance analysis

Ground test

Flight readiness

Real-time telemetry

Post flight review

Anomaly resolution

Hardware evaluation

Test planning/analysis

Component/system modeling

Rocketdyne Linear

Aerospike Engine

Atlas IIAS AC-160 Centaur Separation and RL10 Ignition

  • Additional roles

    • Technology planning

    • Design review

    • Risk assessment

    • Propulsion system trade studies

    • Advanced propulsion technologies

    • Pressurization analysis

External aerodynamics

External Aerodynamics


Predict distributed pressure and velocity trends over the vehicle

Compartment venting

Aero heating

Predict forces and moments

Performance and control


Reversed flow and cross flow identified on Delta IV vehicles

Heating implications addressed

Wake discovered from nose of NASA WB-57F aircraft

Nose redesigned to accommodate flight sensorand imaging payload

Reversed Flow, Mach 2.5

Detailed above

Separation analysis and testing

Separation Analysis and Testing


Rigid body separation

Flexible body separation

Effect of complex interactions



Gas dynamics

Test planning and data analysis

  • Use

    • Separation velocities andtip-off rates predictions

    • Separation clearances

    • Effect of separation anomalies

    • Component loads

    • Effect of separation dispersions

    • Separation test criteria

  • Tools

    • Separation analysis tools

    • Rigid body

    • Flexible body

    • Data visualization and analysis

    • Classified and unclassified analysis environments

Satellite attitude control

Satellite Attitude Control


Response to string of failures in 70’s

Detailed dynamics and controller models

Validate dynamic performance

All modes, transitions, contingencies

Scientific and hardware-in-the-loop simulation

Evolution to 1990’s

Early involvement, work with contractor

Address high-payoff issues

Solar Panel Deployment and Earth Positioning


  • Payoffs

    • Identification of unanticipated problems

    • Tools/knowledge base for anomaly resolution/flight support

    • Hardware-in-the-loop simulation for flight software patch validation

    • Significant impact on every program

Satellite on orbit support

Satellite On-Orbit Support

Objectives: Risk assessment for continuing use of DSCS III satellites

Refine fuel estimate to describe the remaining life prior to the super-synchronous disposal

Ensure adherence to US space policy regarding disposal

Accomplishments: Statistical estimation method developed

Current estimation techniques refined

Statistical method used to combine two independent estimates yielding a higher accuracy prediction

Allowed for the prolonged use of two existing satellites

Gps applications

GPS Applications


Improve navigation/guidance system performance

Optimal control/filtering/signal processing

Innovative use of GPS

GPS Receiver

  • Current projects

    • Ultra-tightly coupled receiver(high anti-jam potential

    • Launch range metric tracking (retirement of range-safety radars)

    • GPS based spin sensor/attitude sensor

    • GPS anti-spoofing and multi-path detection/correction (neural networks)

Reference GPS




Kalman Filter

Aerospace avionics centers

Aerospace Avionics Centers


Validate adequacy of flight software implementation into flight hardware

  • Products

    • Software risk assessment

    • Mission readiness certification

    • Day-of-launch systems development

    • Vehicle dynamics and systems simulations

Flight Equivalent


Modular Simulation Environments

  • Real-Time Center(Spacecraft)

    • GPS, DSCS, Milstar, etc.

  • Avionics Center(Launch Vehicles)

    • Delta IV, Atlas V, Titan IV, etc.



Success of each mission is crucial to national defense and American way of life

The industry, The Aerospace Corporation in particular, has an obligation to focus on mission success

Best practices

Lessons learned

Advanced tools, and technology

Challenges remain

Improved performance/service

Lower life cycle cost

Industry s obligation for mission success1

Industry’s Obligationfor Mission Success

19th AIAA Space Flight Mechanics Conference

Dr. Alex Liang

General Manager, Vehicle Systems Division

Vehicle Systems Division

February 10, 2009


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