Date of Award
Master of Science in Systems Engineering
Department of Systems Engineering and Management
Kirk W. Johnson, PhD
Bryan D. Little, PhD
Modern space missions are increasingly transiting cislunar space, requiring expansion of existing Space Traffic Management (STM) functions. Legacy Space Domain Awareness (SDA) systems were not purpose-built to detect and track cislunar objects, which could require acquisition of a new system of systems. There are numerous parameters that could be varied for each system, as well as the type and location of systems across the architecture. This research attempts to solve this problem by applying a model-based systems engineering (MBSE) approach to assess the performance and financial burden of a given system of systems. Fitness metrics are developed based upon the ability of an architecture to detect and track a cislunar object, as well as the aggregate cost of that system. The physics of the cislunar SDA domain are examined, and solar exclusion angles, solar phase angle, and lunar exclusion angles are determined to play a large role in determining system performance. For the selected reference architecture, consisting of a single satellite in an L1 Lyapunov orbit, performance is dominated by lunar exclusion angles. This physical effect renders ground-based observers useless, although space-based observers are still capable of viewing the object of interest when the Earth blocks the Moon from the sensor field of view. The highest performing architecture is determined to be a 4-ball synodic plane-matched LEO architecture.
Knister, Simon R., "Evaluation Framework for Cislunar Space Domain Awareness (SDA) Systems" (2020). Theses and Dissertations. 3243.