Parametric CubeSat flight simulation architecture

Lowe, Christopher John and Macdonald, Malcolm and Greenland, Stephen (2013) Parametric CubeSat flight simulation architecture. In: 64th International Astronautical Congress 2013, 2013-09-23 - 2013-09-27.

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This paper presents the architecture of a system of models that provides realistic simulation of the dynamic, in-orbit behaviour of a CubeSat. Time-dependent relationships between sub-systems and between the satellite and external nodes (ground stations and celestial bodies) are captured through numerical analysis of a multi-disciplinary set of state variables including position, attitude, stored energy, stored data and system temperature. Model-Based Systems Engineering and parametric modelling techniques are employed throughout to help visualise the models and ensure flexibility and expandability. Operational mode states are also incorporated within the design, allowing the systems engineer to assess flight behaviour over a range of mission scenarios. Finally, both long and short term dynamics are captured using a coupled-model philosophy; described as Lifetime and Operations models. An example mission is analysed and preliminary results are presented as an illustration of early capabilities.