Samvaad-Talk on Navigation and tracking in space by Dr. Sanat K Biswas


The talk will focus on the navigation and tracking of artificial space objects. A brief overview of modelling the dynamics in a wide range of space missions – earth-orbiting satellite missions, launch and re-entry mission, and designing suitable estimation algorithms for each type of missions will be presented. For earth-orbiting satellite tracking and navigation, various ground and space-based observations and associated error models will be discussed in detail. Navigation and tracking results will be demonstrated using the Least Square Estimation and the Extended Kalman Filter (EKF) for simulated observations. Relevant challenges in numerical implementation of navigation algorithms will also be discussed. The dynamics of launch and re-entry vehicle are different than the satellite dynamics and extremely non-linear. The effect of nonlinearity in on navigation performance will be explained in this context and methods for addressing estimation errors due to the non-linearity in the Kalman Filter framework will be described. Navigation and tracking using the Unscented Kalman Filter, Particle Filter and their computationally efficient variants will be presented. Additionally, Choice of estimation algorithm based on the non-linearity of the dynamics, considerations for real-time navigation on-board will be discussed.