Space collision threat mitigation

Aleksandar Zatezalo, Dušan Stipanović, Raman K. Mehra, Khanh Pham

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Mitigation of possible collision threats to current and future operations in space environments is an important an challenging task considering high nonlinearity of orbital dynamics and discrete measurement updates. Such discrete observations are relatively scarce with respect to space dynamics including possible unintentional or intentional rocket propulsion based maneuvers even in scenarios when measurement collections are focused to a one single target of interest. In our paper, this problem is addressed in terms of multihypothesis and multimodel estimation in conjunction with multi-agent multigoal game theoretic guaranteed evasion strategies. Collision threat estimation is formulated using conditional probabilities of time dependent hypotheses and spacecraft controls which are computed using Liapunov-like approach. Based on this formulation, time dependent functional forms of multi-objective utility functions are derived given threat collision risk levels. For demonstrating developed concepts, numerical methods are developed using nonlinear filtering methodology for updating hypothesis sets and corresponding conditional probabilities. Space platform associated sensor resources are managed using previously developed and demonstrated information-theoretic objective functions and optimization methods. Consequently, estimation and numerical methods are evaluated and demonstrated on a realistic Low Earth Orbit collision encounter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSignal Processing, Sensor/Information Fusion, and Target Recognition XXIII
ISBN (Print)9781628410280
StatePublished - 2014
EventSignal Processing, Sensor/Information Fusion, and Target Recognition XXIII - Baltimore, MD, United States
Duration: May 5 2014May 8 2014

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


OtherSignal Processing, Sensor/Information Fusion, and Target Recognition XXIII
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityBaltimore, MD


  • Liapunov method
  • Maneuver constraints
  • Multigoal utility function
  • Multihypothesis estimation
  • Multimodel tracking
  • Orbital propagation
  • Space collision risk
  • Space situational awareness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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