Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

David R. Jacques, PhD.


Aircraft course planning between two points in a clear, no threat environment is easy and straightforward. However, the addition of various threats can greatly increase the difficulty and complexity of course planning. Placing new waypoints along the edge of each threat, mostly skirting the dangerous environment, may not prove too difficult, but such courses are far from optimal. Given aircraft, environment, and time constraints it is likely a much more optimal path exists between any given start and end points. This research focuses on determining the feasibility of using the General Pseudospectral Optimization Software program files written for the MATLAB software package to take a given path, optimize it for the environment, and output a flyable, optimized course that can be used for more detailed mission planning. The results showed creating such a code was feasible. GPOPS can handle a simple version of what could be a very complex optimization problem. Two different versions of the final code show the successful optimization of the problem when the model is kept simple, and the failures GPOPS experiences when the problem becomes too complex.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number