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Autonomous Systems, Formation Flying and In-Orbit Servicing and Assembling Technologies

This PhD project is carried out in collaboration with the Center for Autonomous
Systems at KTH and the Swedish Space Corporation.


The PhD student is Johan Thunberg with Xiaoming Hu (CIAM/KTH) as the advisor. In addition to the adviser, the reference group consists of Björn Jakobsson (Swedish Space Corporation) and Jan Fäger (MEEQ AB) .


The project is funded by the Swedish Space Corporation and Nationellt Flygtekniskt Forskningsprogram .


Johan is making good progress towards his PhD thesis and there are no delays to report about. He is expected to finalise his PhD thesis in 2013.


The development of formation flying technology can enable many important space missions that currently cannot be carried with today's technology. The key idea of formation flying is to synchronise and coordinate a number of space vehicles such that they can reach a common goal together.

The project seeks to use techniques from control and estimation, consensus problems and optimisation on systems of mobile agents for supporting formation flying technology. Specific focus is on formation flying for establishing a virtual structure in space and formation flying for in-orbit-assembly.


Provide algorithms for formation flying of mobile agents in space.