Reconfigurability in Planetary Surface Vehicles - Modelling Approaches and Case Study

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A. Siddiqi; O. L. de Weck; K. Iagnemma (2006), JBIS, 59, 450-460

Refcode: 2006.59.450
Keywords: Reconfigurability, planetary surface vehicle, non-homogeneous markov model, controls theory

Reconfigurability is being recognized as increasingly important for space systems for reasons of efficiency, extensibility and mission robustness. Planetary Surface Vehicles (PSVs), that may be used in future manned exploration missions, can especially benefit from reconfigurability. Two frameworks for studying reconfigurable systems are proposed that allow for analyzing systems that undergo changes over time. The first framework, using Non-Homogeneous Markov Models (NHMM), allows for identifying useful configurations or states. The second framework, based on control theory, enables issues such as reconfiguration time, and dynamics of the reconfiguration process to be assessed. The application of these models is shown for a PSV in a future human exploration mission that can reconfigure to respond to changing terrain conditions. The results for the specific case considered show that reconfigurability improves the performance of the vehicle over the course of a simulated sortie by approximately 30%.

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