MASSACHUSETTS INST OF TECH CAMBRIDGE DEPT OF AERONAUTICS AND ASTRONAUTICS
This report summaries 20 months of research into Travelling Wave Concepts for the Modelling and Control of Space Structures. A good portion of the research has focused upon the development of techniques for the modelling of structural response in terms of disturbance propagation. Such models are of interest for several reasons 1. Understanding the mechanisms that govern the propagation of disturbances through an elastic structure is useful for building intuition, for structural design and for design of active control, and 2. Disturbance propagation models have the potential for providing high-fidelity analysis capabilities in response regimes where other techniques are inapplicable. Of considerable interest to the researchers at MIT is the response of elastic spacecraft to disturbances with significant spectral content at frequencies including many even hundreds of the spacecraft natural modes of structural vibration and 3. Elastic disturbance propagation is a classic area of research in applied mechanics, having application in acoustics, seismology, microwave electronics, transducer design, biological fluid mechanics, design of mechanisms and machines, and many other areas.