Virtual Industrial Laboratory Series

3. Rockets Package

Rocket launch vehicles are spectacular examples of aerospace engineering in which control engineering plays a crucial role. In particular, the stability of a rocket is dependent upon properly designed control systems which regulate the angle at which thrust is applied to the rocket body.

In this package we start with developing an understanding of the fundamental dynamics of a simple two dimensional rocket in flight and explain how the design of a rocket influences its stability in flight.  The linearisation of the nonlinear dynamical equations are then described and these equations are used to show how the rocket parameters affect stability.  The second laboratory concerns controlling the rocket, an open-loop unstable system.  The student is shown how a linearised controller is designed for this nonlinear system and how disturbances can influence the performance of this controller.

  1. Rockets - Dynamics
  2. Rockets - Controller Design