Methodology for Prototyping Increased Levels of Automation for Spacecraft Rendezvous Functions Conference Paper uri icon


  • The Crew Exploration Vehicle necessitates higher levels of automation than previous NASA vehicles, due to program requirements for automation, including Automated Rendezvous and Docking. Studies of spacecraft development often point to the locus of decision-making authority between humans and computers (i.e. automation) as a prime driver for cost, safety, and mission success. Therefore, a critical component in the Crew Exploration Vehicle development is the determination of the correct level of automation. To identify the appropriate levels of automation and autonomy to design into a human space flight vehicle, NASA has created the Function-specific Level of Autonomy and Automation Tool. This paper develops a methodology for prototyping increased levels of automation for spacecraft rendezvous functions. This methodology is used to evaluate the accuracy of the Function-specific Level of Autonomy and Automation Tool specified levels of automation, via prototyping. Spacecraft rendezvous planning tasks are selected and then prototyped in Matlab using Fuzzy Logic techniques and existing Space Shuttle rendezvous trajectory algorithms. The results of the prototype indicate that the selected level of automation is reasonably accurate and that Fuzzy Logic can be effectively used to model human decision-making used in spacecraft rendezvous.

name of conference

  • AIAA Infotech@Aerospace 2007 Conference and Exhibit

published proceedings

  • AIAA Infotech@Aerospace 2007 Conference and Exhibit

author list (cited authors)

  • Hart, J., & Valasek, J.

citation count

  • 1

complete list of authors

  • Hart, Jeremy||Valasek, John

publication date

  • May 2007