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Sensors 2016, 16(11), 1817; doi:10.3390/s16111817

Signal Conditioning for the Kalman Filter: Application to Satellite Attitude Estimation with Magnetometer and Sun Sensors

1
Department of Computer Architecture and Automatic Control, Faculty of Physic Sciences, Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid 28040, Spain
2
Department of Computer Engineering, University of Alcala, Alcalá de Henares 28871, Spain
3
Department of Space Programs, INTA, Torrejón de Ardoz 28850, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Gonzalo Pajares Martinsanz
Received: 3 August 2016 / Revised: 16 September 2016 / Accepted: 25 October 2016 / Published: 31 October 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Spain 2016)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [5306 KB, uploaded 31 October 2016]   |  

Abstract

Most satellites use an on-board attitude estimation system, based on available sensors. In the case of low-cost satellites, which are of increasing interest, it is usual to use magnetometers and Sun sensors. A Kalman filter is commonly recommended for the estimation, to simultaneously exploit the information from sensors and from a mathematical model of the satellite motion. It would be also convenient to adhere to a quaternion representation. This article focuses on some problems linked to this context. The state of the system should be represented in observable form. Singularities due to alignment of measured vectors cause estimation problems. Accommodation of the Kalman filter originates convergence difficulties. The article includes a new proposal that solves these problems, not needing changes in the Kalman filter algorithm. In addition, the article includes assessment of different errors, initialization values for the Kalman filter; and considers the influence of the magnetic dipole moment perturbation, showing how to handle it as part of the Kalman filter framework. View Full-Text
Keywords: attitude determination and control; magnetometer sensor; Sun sensors; Kalman filter; low cost satellites; quaternion; condition number attitude determination and control; magnetometer sensor; Sun sensors; Kalman filter; low cost satellites; quaternion; condition number
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Esteban, S.; Girón-Sierra, J.M.; Polo, Ó.R.; Angulo, M. Signal Conditioning for the Kalman Filter: Application to Satellite Attitude Estimation with Magnetometer and Sun Sensors. Sensors 2016, 16, 1817.

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