Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics

First Advisor

Jonathan T. Black, PhD.


The concept of responsive space has been gaining interest, and growing to include systems that can be re-tasked to complete multiple missions within their lifetime. The purpose of this study is to develop an algorithm that produces a maneuver trajectory that will cause a spacecraft to arrive at a particular location within its orbit earlier than expected. The time difference, delta t, is used as a metric to quantify the effects of the maneuver. Two separate algorithms are developed. The first algorithm is an optimal control method and is developed through Optimal Control Theory. The second algorithm is a feedback control method and is developed through Lyapunov Theory. It is shown that the two algorithms produce equivalent results for the maneuvers discussed. In-plane maneuver results are analyzed analytically, and an algebraic expression for delta t is derived. Examples are provided of how the analytic expression can be used for mission planning purposes. The feedback control algorithm is then further developed to demonstrate the simplicity of implementing additional capabilities. Finally, a set of simulations is analyzed to show that in order to maximize the amount of delta t achieved, a spacecraft must be allowed as much lead time as possible, and begin thrusting as early as possible.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number


Included in

Astrodynamics Commons