Multistage launch vehicles are commonly employed to place spacecraft and satellites in their operational orbits. If the rocket characteristics are specified, the optimization of its ascending trajectory consists of determining the optimal control law that leads to maximizing the final mass at orbit injection. The numerical solution of a similar problem is not trivial and has been pursued with different methods, for decades. This paper is concerned with an original approach based on swarming theory. The particle swarm optimization technique represents a heuristic population-based optimization method inspired by the natural motion of bird flocks. Each individual (or particle) that composes the swarm corresponds to a solution of the problem and is associated with a position and a velocity vector. The formula for velocity updating is the core of the method, and is composed of three terms with stochastic weights. As a result, the population migrates toward different regions of the search space taking advantage of the mechanism of information sharing that affects the overall swarm dynamics. At the end of the process the best particle is selected and corresponds to the optimal solution to the problem of interest. In this work the three-dimensional trajectory of the multistage rocket is assumed to be composed of four arcs: (i) first stage propulsion, (ii) second stage propulsion, (iii) coast arc (after release of the second stage), and (iv) third stage propulsion. The Euler-Lagrange equations and the Pontryagin minimum principle, in conjunction with the Weierstrass-Erdmann corner conditions, are employed to express the thrust angles as functions of the adjoint variables conjugate to the dynamics equations. The use of these analytical conditions coming from the calculus of variations leads to obtaining the overall rocket dynamics as a function of seven parameters only, namely the unknown values of the initial state and costate components, the coast duration, and the upper stage thrust duration. In addition, a simple approach is introduced and successfully applied with the purpose of satisfying exactly the path constraint related to the maximum dynamical pressure in the atmospheric phase. The basic version of the swarming technique, which is used in this research, is extremely simple and easy to program. Nevertheless, the algorithm proves to be capable of yielding the optimal rocket trajectory with great numerical accuracy. Copyright© (2012) by the International Astronautical Federation.

Particle swarm optimization of ascending trajectories of mulstistage rockets / Pontani, M.. - 7:(2012), pp. 5549-5561. (Intervento presentato al convegno 63rd International Astronautical Congress 2012, IAC 2012 tenutosi a Naples, ita).

### Particle swarm optimization of ascending trajectories of mulstistage rockets

#### Abstract

Multistage launch vehicles are commonly employed to place spacecraft and satellites in their operational orbits. If the rocket characteristics are specified, the optimization of its ascending trajectory consists of determining the optimal control law that leads to maximizing the final mass at orbit injection. The numerical solution of a similar problem is not trivial and has been pursued with different methods, for decades. This paper is concerned with an original approach based on swarming theory. The particle swarm optimization technique represents a heuristic population-based optimization method inspired by the natural motion of bird flocks. Each individual (or particle) that composes the swarm corresponds to a solution of the problem and is associated with a position and a velocity vector. The formula for velocity updating is the core of the method, and is composed of three terms with stochastic weights. As a result, the population migrates toward different regions of the search space taking advantage of the mechanism of information sharing that affects the overall swarm dynamics. At the end of the process the best particle is selected and corresponds to the optimal solution to the problem of interest. In this work the three-dimensional trajectory of the multistage rocket is assumed to be composed of four arcs: (i) first stage propulsion, (ii) second stage propulsion, (iii) coast arc (after release of the second stage), and (iv) third stage propulsion. The Euler-Lagrange equations and the Pontryagin minimum principle, in conjunction with the Weierstrass-Erdmann corner conditions, are employed to express the thrust angles as functions of the adjoint variables conjugate to the dynamics equations. The use of these analytical conditions coming from the calculus of variations leads to obtaining the overall rocket dynamics as a function of seven parameters only, namely the unknown values of the initial state and costate components, the coast duration, and the upper stage thrust duration. In addition, a simple approach is introduced and successfully applied with the purpose of satisfying exactly the path constraint related to the maximum dynamical pressure in the atmospheric phase. The basic version of the swarming technique, which is used in this research, is extremely simple and easy to program. Nevertheless, the algorithm proves to be capable of yielding the optimal rocket trajectory with great numerical accuracy. Copyright© (2012) by the International Astronautical Federation.
##### Scheda breve Scheda completa
2012
63rd International Astronautical Congress 2012, IAC 2012
multistage launch vehicles; orbit injection; particle swarm optimization; ascent path of rockets
04 Pubblicazione in atti di convegno::04b Atto di convegno in volume
Particle swarm optimization of ascending trajectories of mulstistage rockets / Pontani, M.. - 7:(2012), pp. 5549-5561. (Intervento presentato al convegno 63rd International Astronautical Congress 2012, IAC 2012 tenutosi a Naples, ita).
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: `https://hdl.handle.net/11573/1681005`