Category Archives: Classes

Autonomous Scheduling for Rapid Responsive Launch of Constellations

The dissertation proposal for “Autonomous Scheduling for Rapid Responsive Launch of Constellations,” by Christopher R. Simpson was successfully defended on 23 March 2020. Regular demonstrations of improvements to the model every two weeks on an agile management framework will be posted to Simpson Aerospace and Christopher R. Simpson’s doctoral committee. The proposal and addendum are available upon request.

Abstract and Presentation

Rapid response airborne launch vehicles can provide the capability to respond to a developing situation anywhere in the world with a nanosatellite overhead in under an hour. This represents an opportunity to provide rapid response for military missions, disaster response, and rapid science return from remote/extreme physical locations. Current capabilities in the denial and tracking of space-assets limits the effectiveness of constellations already on-orbit to be agile in a military response. Constellations on-orbit can take up to a day or more for disaster data return to rescue operations personnel. Remote and rapid science return may help model Arctic cyclones which can only be accurately predicted 24 hours before they occur. To achieve time-sensitive returns from a constellation in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) scheduling algorithms for multiple near-simultaneous launches are proposed. Specifically, a mission planning system for delivery of multiple satellites from multiple similar air-launched platforms for constellation installation over any selected point optimizing for mean response time with constraints on the quality of coverage. The focus is on the scheduling of tactical fighter aircraft with airborne launch vehicles to achieve the minimum response time to fit the mission needs.

Cesium Demo Using STK Scenario/TLE Data

Spring 2019 – Orbit Determination Course

Thanks to those of you that have been following the orbit determination course.

  1. This course is being revamped/restarted. We will follow a typical semester schedule. We had our first lecture today.
  2. I apologize to those following previously. Things got hectic with my father’s illness and qualifying exams for my Ph.D.
  3. Looking forward to hearing from all of you!

 Check It Out!

Before we get started, just a few things:

  • If you’re working through the material and have a question, please leave it on the lecture page on YouTube! The goal is to encourage discussion!
  • I appreciate feedback! I want to make it as easy as possible for you to learn from me.


Thank you for signing up and wanting to learn more about OD!

Updates: Ph.D. Candidate

I’ve officially passed my qualifying exams. I took my qualifiers in both Intermediate Dynamics and Space Systems. Having passed both I am officially a Ph.D. Candidate. Time to begin preparing for my thesis proposal.

Next semester will see the completion of a satellite ground station at Alabama (more on that later), the publishing of an Orbit Determination course, and my proposal.

I can’t wait to return to my research! It’s been languishing as I focused on qualifiers.