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Application of Scheduling Theory to Spacecraft Constellations

by Christopher J. Graham

e-Book PDF
Institution: Florida Institute of Technology
Advisor(s): Gary Howell
Degree: M.S., Computer Science
Year: 2000
Volume: 98 pages
ISBN-10: 1581120915
ISBN-13: 9781581120912


In this thesis we advance the state-of the practice in the Space Mission Operations domain by leveraging single spacecraft technologies along with classical scheduling frameworks and notation to create a scheduler for a constellation of spacecraft. We define a scheduling product that is focused on the problem of scheduling networked groups of spacecraft, called constellations. Within this thesis we show that the constellation schedule problem is a very complex problem, and the application of heuristics is one approach that allow us to schedule successfully. Our first objective, comprising chapters 1, 2, and 3, is to describe the spacecraft constellation domain and the objectives of the thesis. This background provides a foundation for understanding the constellation scheduling problem domain. Our second objective, comprising chapters 4, 5 and 6, is to provide a representation and description of the components of a constellation system, and a formal definition of the constellation schedule problem via existing formal scheduling frameworks and notation. Our third objective, comprising chapter 7, is to use these frameworks to allow us to deduce the complexity of the problem. Our fourth objective, comprising chapter 8, is to present techniques that allow us to leverage single spacecraft scheduling techniques to construct a constellation scheduler. Our final objective, comprising chapter 9, is to propose a scheduler architecture that satisfies a typical constellation scheduling problem.