Development of a Novel Device for Attitude Control over Small Satellites


Article Preview

Recent years have faced a very modern trend for space exploration activities – constructing, launching and operating nanosatellites have become very popular. One of the major problems of implementing and taking control over the nanosatellite is ensuring accurate but simple and small dimension equipment for attitude control. Most of the equipment implemented for the introduced task was large and bulky in the past and could be hardly used on extremely small satellites. The paper describes equipment under development for attitude control over satellites. Equipment relies on the implementation of piezoelectric transducers for the rotation of a spherical body, i.e. reaction sphere, thus ensuring precise three-axis attitude control over the satellite by means of a single device. Further, the article focuses on the device under development with some calculations and examples of implementing such instruments.



Solid State Phenomena (Volumes 220-221)

Edited by:

Algirdas V. Valiulis, Olegas Černašėjus and Vadim Mokšin




V. Bakanauskas et al., "Development of a Novel Device for Attitude Control over Small Satellites", Solid State Phenomena, Vols. 220-221, pp. 561-564, 2015

Online since:

January 2015




* - Corresponding Author

[1] F. Leve, A. Tatsch, N. Fitz-Coy, A scalable control moment gyro design for attitude control of micro-, nano-, and pico-class satellites, Advances in the Astronautical Sciences 128 (2007) 235–237.

[2] T. Inamori, et al., Attitude stabilization for the nano remote sensing satellite PRISM, Journal of Aerospace Engineering (2011) 187–191.

[3] S. Das, M. Sinha, K. D. Kumar, A. Misra, Reconfigurable magnetic attitude control of Earthpointing satellites, in: Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part G, Journal of Aerospace Engineering (2010) 1309–1326.


[4] E. Onillon, O. Chételat, L. Rossini, S. Droz, L. Lisowski, J. Moerschell, Reaction sphere for attitude control: CSEM Scientific and Technical Report, Patent No WO 2007/113666 A2, 2008, 2 p.

[5] L. Rossini, O. Chetelat, E. Onillon, Y. Perriard, Analytical and experimental investigation on the force and torque of a Reaction Sphere for satellite attitude control, in: IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics, 2011, p.487.


[6] R. Bansevicius, V. Kargaudas, Attitude control of micro- and nanosatellite's using multidegree-of-freedom piezoelectric actuators, Vibration Problems, ICOVP, 2011, p.379 – 384.


[7] R. Bansevicius, A. Drukteiniene, G. Kulvietis, Trajectory planning method of rotating mobile piezorobot, Journal of Vibroengineering 11(4) (2009): 690–696.


[8] I. Tumasonienė, G. Kulvietis, D. Mazeika, R. Bansevicius, The eigenvalue problem and its relevance to the optimal configuration of electrodes for ultrasound actuators, J. Sound Vib., Elsevier Science, London, 308(3–5) (2007).


[9] A.D. Anderson, J.J. Sellers, Y. Hashida, Attitude determination and control system simulation and analysis for low-cost micro-satellites, Proceedings of Aerospace Conference, vol. 5. 6, 2004, p.29–35.