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.