This paper presents an agile and robust spacecraft attitude tracking controller using the recently reformulated incremental nonlinear dynamic inversion (INDI). INDI is a combined model- and sensor-based control approach that only requires a control effectiveness model and measurements of the state and some of its derivatives, making a reduced dependency on exact system dynamics knowledge. The reformulated INDI allows a non-cascaded dynamic inversion control in terms of Modified Rodrigues Parameters (MRPs) where scheduling of the time-varying control effectiveness is done analytically. This way, the controller is only sensitive to parametric uncertainty of the augmented spacecraft inertia and its wheelset alignment. Moreover, we draw some parallels to time-delay control (TDC) -more familiar in the robotics community- which have been shown to be equivalent to the incremental formulation of proportional-integral-derivative (PID) control for second order nonlinear systems in controller canonical form. Simulation experiments for this particular problem demonstrate that INDI has similar nominal performance as TDC/PID control, but superior robust performance and stability.
- Application of nonlinear analysis