Document Type : Original Article


1 New Technologies Department, Iran University of Science and Technology, Tehran, Iran

2 Advance Technology Department/ Iran University of Science and Technology


Finding the best possible scheduling to maximize observations and transfer them to the ground station as a function of satellite characteristics, orbital mechanics, attitude control system, field of view and observational objectives, is very important. The combination of the agility of the satellite with regard to the ability to quick maneuver along the three axes of roll, pitch and yaw, with a suitable software can significantly improve the response rate, revisit time and satellite coverage and respond to users’ needs. In this regard, the design of a comprehensive scheduling that automatically creates an optimal operational sequence for the maximum utilization of agile Earth observation satellites during a certain period of time in order to respond to the needs and priorities of the users and to satisfy the operational limitations of the satellites. Therefore, in this article, the design of an automatic software for scheduling Earth observation satellites is presented, which after receiving observational targets from the user and assigning observation priority to each task, the ability to implement and execute observation tasks is checked by the attitude control subsystem to satisfy the attitude maneuver limit around the roll and pitch axes and orbital mechanics subsystem to satisfy the target access time window limit. Then, by using discrete event supervisory control, constraints are applied to the transfer system to add specific features and requirements to the mission. With the help of an optimal search algorithm based on the Bellman-Ford method, the optimal program sequence for the maximum use of the satellite while meeting the operational limitations of the mission is obtained automatically. Finally, a remote sensing mission is simulated to demonstrate the planned verification


Main Subjects

##[1]    Wang, G. Wu, L. Xing, and W. Pedrycz, “Agile Earth Observation Satellite Scheduling Over 20 Years: Formulations, Methods, and Future Directions,” IEEE Syst J, vol. 15, no. 3, pp. 3881–3892, 2021, doi: 10.1109/JSYST.2020.2997050.##
##[2]    S. Nag, J. LeMoigne, and O. de Weck, “Cost and risk analysis of small satellite constellations for earth observation,” in 2014 IEEE Aerospace Conference, 2014, pp. 1–16. doi: 10.1109/AERO.2014.6836396.##
##[3]    M. Lemaı̂tre, G. Verfaillie, F. Jouhaud, J.-M. Lachiver, and N. Bataille, “Selecting and scheduling observations of agile satellites,” Aerosp Sci Technol, vol. 6, no. 5, pp. 367–381, 2002.##
##[4]    A. Globus, J. Crawford, J. Lohn, and A. Pryor, “A Comparison of Techniques for Scheduling Earth Observing Satellites.” [Online]. Available:
##[5]    G. Verfaillie and M. Lemaître, “Selecting and scheduling observations for agile satellites: some lessons from the constraint reasoning community point of view,” in International Conference on Principles and Practice of Constraint Programming, 2001, pp. 670–684.##
##[6]    X. Wang, G. Song, R. Leus, and C. Han, “Robust Earth Observation Satellite Scheduling With Uncertainty of Cloud Coverage,” IEEE Trans Aerosp Electron Syst, vol. 56, no. 3, pp. 2450–2461, 2020, doi: 10.1109/TAES.2019.2947978.##
## [7]   Y. Gu, C. Han, and X. Wang, “A Kriging Based Framework for Rapid Satellite-to-Site Visibility Determination,” in 2019 IEEE 10th International Conference on Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (ICMAE), 2019, pp. 262–267. doi: 10.1109/ICMAE.2019.8880987.##
##[8]    C. Han, S. Bai, S. Zhang, X. Wang, and X. Wang, “Visibility optimization of satellite constellations using a hybrid method,” Acta Astronaut, vol. 163, pp. 250–263, 2019, doi:
##[9]    X. Wang, C. Han, P. Yang, and X. Sun, “Onboard satellite visibility prediction using metamodeling based framework,” Aerosp Sci Technol, vol. 94, p. 105377, 2019, doi:
##[10] D. L. Brandel, W. A. Watson, and A. Weinberg, “NASA’s advanced tracking and data relay satellite system for the years 2000 and beyond,” Proceedings of the IEEE, vol. 78, no. 7, pp. 1141–1151, 1990, doi: 10.1109/5.56928.##
##[11] S. Rojanasoonthon, J. F. Bard, and S. D. Reddy, “Algorithms for parallel machine scheduling: a case study of the tracking and data relay satellite system,” Journal of the Operational Research Society, vol. 54, no. 8, pp. 806–821, Aug. 2003, doi: 10.1057/palgrave.jors.2601575.##
##[12] X. Wang, R. Leus, and C. Han, “Fixed Interval Scheduling of Multiple Earth Observation Satellites with Multiple Observations,” in 2018 9th International Conference on Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (ICMAE), 2018, pp. 28–33. doi: 10.1109/ICMAE.2018.8467667.##
##[13] X. Liu, G. Laporte, Y. Chen, and R. He, “An adaptive large neighborhood search metaheuristic for agile satellite scheduling with time-dependent transition time,” Comput Oper Res, vol. 86, pp. 41–53, 2017, doi:
##[14] Y. She, S. Li, and Y. Zhao, “Onboard mission planning for agile satellite using modified mixed-integer linear programming,” Aerosp Sci Technol, vol. 72, pp. 204–216, 2018.##
##[15] B. Du, S. Li, Y. She, W. Li, H. Liao, and H. Wang, “Area targets observation mission planning of agile satellite considering the drift angle constraint,” J Astron Telesc Instrum Syst, vol. 4, no. 4, p. 047002, 2018.##
##[16] J. Li, C. Gao, C. Li, and W. Jing, “A survey on moving mass control technology,” Aerosp Sci Technol, vol. 82, pp. 594–606, 2018.##
##[17] V. Gabrel, A. Moulet, C. Murat, and V. Th. Paschos, “A new single model and derived algorithms for the satellite shot planning problem using graph theory concepts,” Ann Oper Res, vol. 69, no. 0, pp. 115–134, 1997, doi: 10.1023/A:1018920709696.##
##[18] X. Wang, C. Han, R. Zhang, and Y. Gu, “Scheduling Multiple Agile Earth Observation Satellites for Oversubscribed Targets Using Complex Networks Theory,” IEEE Access, vol. 7, pp. 110605–110615, 2019, doi: 10.1109/ACCESS.2019.2925704.##
##[19] S. de Florio, “Performances optimization of remote sensing satellite constellations: a heuristic method,” in Proc. of 5th Intern. Workshop on Planning and Scheduling for Space (IWPSS 2006), 2006.##
##[20] P. Wang, G. Reinelt, P. Gao, and Y. Tan, “A model, a heuristic and a decision support system to solve the scheduling problem of an earth observing satellite constellation,” Comput Ind Eng, vol. 61, no. 2, pp. 322–335, 2011, doi:
##[21] Z. Li and X. Li, “A multi-objective binary-encoding differential evolution algorithm for proactive scheduling of agile earth observation satellites,” Advances in Space Research, vol. 63, no. 10, pp. 3258–3269, 2019, doi:
##[22] J. Wang, E. Demeulemeester, and D. Qiu, “A pure proactive scheduling algorithm for multiple earth observation satellites under uncertainties of clouds,” Comput Oper Res, vol. 74, pp. 1–13, 2016, doi:
##[23] W. J. Wolfe and S. E. Sorensen, “Three scheduling algorithms applied to the earth observing systems domain,” Manage Sci, vol. 46, no. 1, pp. 148–166, 2000.##
##[24] T. P. Bagchi, “Near Optimal Ground Support in Multi-Spacecraft Missions: A GA Model and its Results,” IEEE Trans Aerosp Electron Syst, vol. 45, no. 3, pp. 950–964, 2009, doi: 10.1109/TAES.2009.5259176.##
##[25] A. Sarkheyli, A. Bagheri, B. Ghorbani-Vaghei, and R. Askari-Moghadam, “Using an effective tabu search in interactive resources scheduling problem for LEO satellites missions,” Aerosp Sci Technol, vol. 29, no. 1, pp. 287–295, 2013.##
##[26] C. Li, S. Chen, J. Li, and F. Wang, “Distributed multi-step subgradient optimization for multi-agent system,” Syst Control Lett, vol. 128, pp. 26–33, 2019.##
##[27] Y. She and S. Li, “Optimal slew path planning for the Sino-French Space-based multiband astronomical Variable Objects Monitor mission,” J Astron Telesc Instrum Syst, vol. 4, no. 1, p. 017001, 2018.##
##[28] F. Perea, R. Vazquez, and J. Galan-Viogue, “Swath-acquisition planning in multiple-satellite missions: an exact and heuristic approach,” IEEE Trans Aerosp Electron Syst, vol. 51, no. 3, pp. 1717–1725, 2015, doi: 10.1109/TAES.2015.130751.##
##[29] J. Li, C. Li, and F. Wang, “Automatic Scheduling for Earth Observation Satellite With Temporal Specifications,” IEEE Trans Aerosp Electron Syst, vol. 56, no. 4, pp. 3162–3169, 2020, doi: 10.1109/TAES.2020.2966902.##
##[30] W. M. Wonham and K. Cai, “Supervisory control of discrete-event systems.” Springer, 2019.##
##[31] V. Saeidi, A. A. Afzalian, and D. Gharavian, “Localization of DES Supervisory Control with Respect to Each Controllable Event,” Journal of Control, vol. 12, no. 3, pp. 29–41, 2018.##
##[32] C. G. Cassandras and S. Lafortune, Introduction to discrete event systems. Springer, 2008.##
##[33] A. Afzalian, A. Saadatpoor, and W. M. Wonham, “Systematic supervisory control solutions for under-load tap-changing transformers,” Control Eng Pract, vol. 16, no. 9, pp. 1035–1054, 2008.##