Optimal maneuver guidance with sensor line of sight constraint

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Virginia Tech

The problem of optimal guidance design for the low altitude, subsonic, vertical plane approach maneuver of an air vehicle constrained to maintain view of a fixed final position is studied using a nonlinear, constrained, optimal control problem formulation. Multiple, competing optimization criteria are included separately as performance goals and in combination as state equality constraints for design tradeoff analysis. In conjunction with vehicle flight constraints, a sensor line-of -sight (LOS) angle limit is imposed as a control variable inequality constraint to provide a sensor field of regard influence on the guidance design. Numerical results are provided that illustrate the optimal guidance for different performance criteria, the sensor LOS profile along the optimal maneuvers, and the influence of the sensor limit on the guidance law design. A near-optimal, closed-loop feedback guidance law that incorporates the sensor constraint is developed based on neighboring extremals.