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Gimballess Attitude Control System for Spacecraft Using Spherical Rotor

Ayaka Mino and Kenji Uchiyama
Nihon University, Chiba, Japan

Abstract—A new control moment gyro (CMG) using a gimballess design is developed for attitude control of a spacecraft. Although benefits of a conventional CMG system include cleanliness, replenishability of power source, and generation of high torque to change direction of a spacecraft, it is necessary to design a complex control system to avoid impassable and escapable singular states that are caused by gimbals. The proposed CMG system using a spherical rotor does not require gimbals for three-axis attitude control. The spherical rotor, which is driven by three pairs of omni wheel attached at a shaft of a motor, consists of a spherical shell, a flywheel, a battery, and IMU to measure the angular velocity of the rotor. Singularity analysis of the proposed CMG is described, and a preliminary experiment is performed to verify the validity of the CMG. 

Index Terms—spherical CMG, gimballess design, attitude control device, momentum exchange, omni wheel

Cite: Ayaka Mino and Kenji Uchiyama, "Gimballess Attitude Control System for Spacecraft Using Spherical Rotor," International Journal of Mechanical Engineering and Robotics Research, Vol. 7, No. 1, pp. 100-104, January 2018. DOI: 10.18178/ijmerr.7.1.100-104