The Flower Formation Flying - Part II: Application Conference Paper uri icon


  • This paper shows how to design a Flower Formation Flying for a multi-spacecraft interferometric systems, based on Hyland's intensity correlation approach, to image with high resolution solar system planets and Moons. The optimal formation is defined as the one covering the resolution disk of the frequency plane within prescribed time limit. To design the optimal Flower Formation Flying, two optimization techniques have been adopted: the Genetic Algorithm and the Particle Swarm Optimization. Both design techniques take into account the inoperative time due Earth eclipses. This papers shows the frequency disk coverage as a function of the number of telescopes and of the image pixel number. Numerical results clearly show the coverage gain of "circular" and "elliptical" Flower Formation Flying with respect to the classic string-of-pearls formations.

author list (cited authors)

  • Tonetti, S., Hyland, D. C., & Mortari, D.

publication date

  • December 2008