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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 510618, 10 pages
Research Article

Finite-Time Spacecraft’s Soft Landing on Asteroids Using PD and Nonsingular Terminal Sliding Mode Control

College of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Changchun University of Technology, Changchun 130000, China

Received 20 June 2014; Accepted 11 September 2014

Academic Editor: Carlo Cosentino

Copyright © 2015 Keping Liu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper presents a continuous control law of probe, which consists of PD (proportional-derivative) controller and nonsingular terminal sliding mode controller for probe descending and landing phases, respectively, in the case of the asteroid irregular shape and low gravity. The probe dynamic model is deduced in the landing site coordinate system firstly. Then the reference trajectory based on optimal polynomial in open-loop state is designed, with the suboptimal fuel consumption. Taking into account different characteristics of phases, PD controller and nonsingular terminal sliding mode controller can be employed in the descending phase and the landing phase, respectively, to track the designed reference trajectory. The controller which used the corresponding control methods can meet the motion characteristics and requirements of each stage. Finally simulation experiments are carried out to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method, which can ensure the safe landing of probe and achieve continuous control.