An Attitude-Control System for an Earth-Pointing Skylark Rocket.
ROYAL AIRCRAFT ESTABLISHMENT FARNBOROUGH (ENGLAND)
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A three-axis attitude-control system for a Skylark sounding rocket, which enables the vehicle to be used as a platform for earth-observation experiments, is described. The design constraints, in particular those arising from this type of experiment, are specified, and the design criteria for parts of the control system explained. The control system employs earth-albedo horizon-sensors in the roll and pitch axes and has velocity control about the yaw-axis. The components which comprise the system are described, together with their disposition in the vehicle. The performance of the control system in flight is tabulated for the prototype SL1081, and for the first two production vehicles SL1181 and SL1182. Possible improvements in the performance of the control system are suggested. Author