Use of spacecraft solar panels and Sun sensors for estimation of the Sun-pointing direction in the UPMSat-2 mission

Porras-Hermoso, Ángel and Cubas Cano, Javier and Pindado Carrion, Santiago (2022). Use of spacecraft solar panels and Sun sensors for estimation of the Sun-pointing direction in the UPMSat-2 mission. "Measurement", v. 204 (n. 112061); ISSN 0263-2241. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.measurement.2022.112061.

Description

Title: Use of spacecraft solar panels and Sun sensors for estimation of the Sun-pointing direction in the UPMSat-2 mission
Author/s:
  • Porras-Hermoso, Ángel
  • Cubas Cano, Javier
  • Pindado Carrion, Santiago
Item Type: Article
Título de Revista/Publicación: Measurement
Date: 30 November 2022
ISSN: 0263-2241
Volume: 204
Subjects:
Freetext Keywords: Attitude determination ; Spacecraft ; Satellite ; Solar panels ; Sun sensors ; UPMSat-2
Faculty: Instituto de Microgravedad Ignacio Da Riva (UPM)
Department: Sistemas Aeroespaciales, Transporte Aéreo y Aeropuertos
UPM's Research Group: Desarrollo y Ensayos Aeroespaciales DEA
Creative Commons Licenses: Recognition - No derivative works - Non commercial

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Abstract

Solar panels are a key component for most spacecraft as they provide energy to the vehicle. However, their possible use is not limited only to power generation, as they can also be used as solar sensors for attitude determination. To calculate the direction of the Sun, photovoltaic models (two of them explicit, and the well-known 1-D/2-R equivalent circuit) that simulate the performance of the solar panel (including environmental conditions such as temperature, irradiance and Earth’s albedo, to obtain accurate results) are described in this paper. These models are used to estimate the Sun incidence angle in relation to a spacecraft based on solar panel generation data. This methodology is checked with data from the UPMSat-2 mission and compared with independent measurements derived from this satellite magnetometer data. The Sun direction results are finally compared to the results obtained from the low-cost solar sensors on board the UPMSat-2. The results included in this paper hint at the possibility of using spacecraft solar panels as an additional attitude determination instrument to improve the accuracy of the estimation of the sun direction.

Funding Projects

TypeCodeAcronymLeaderTitle
Madrid Regional GovernmentY2020/NMT-6427OAPES-CMSanz Andres, Angel (coord.); Alonso Muñoz, Alejandro (responsable)Operación Avanzada de Pequeños Satélites

More information

Item ID: 71999
DC Identifier: https://oa.upm.es/71999/
OAI Identifier: oai:oa.upm.es:71999
DOI: 10.1016/j.measurement.2022.112061
Official URL: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S026322412201257X
Deposited by: Biblioteca ETSI Aeronauticos
Deposited on: 21 Oct 2022 17:56
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2022 09:00
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