Title:
Atmospheric Data System Sensor Placement Optimization for Mars Entry, Descent, and Landing

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Author(s)
Dutta, Soumyo
Braun, Robert D.
Karlgaard, Christopher D.
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Abstract
The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) contains an atmospheric data system that takes measurement of the pressure distribution on the entry body during the hypersonic and supersonic descent phases of the flight. This pressure data can be combined with other on- board sensors, such as accelerometers, gyros, and radar altimeter, to estimate the flight's trajectory, aerodynamics and the atmospheric profile. The number of sensors and their locations for the atmospheric data system can be optimized to increase the accuracy of the post-flight reconstruction. Methodologies based on using the estimation residual and a surrogate of the observability matrix are presented here and results of the optimization exercises for pressure transducer systems on Mars entry, descent, and landing (EDL) vehicles are shown. These techniques can be subsequently applied in the design of instrumentation suites of future EDL vehicles.
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2012-08
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