Dynamics of the Caltech SSPP deployable structures: structure–mechanism interaction and deployment envelope
The Caltech Space Solar Power Project has been developing ultralight deployable space structures consisting of thin-shell composite strips that support photovoltaic and RF elements. These modular, square structures can potentially be scaled to tens of meters in size. This paper studies the interaction between the deployment dynamics of the structure and the deployment mechanism, both experimentally and numerically. Instead of considering a full structure, a quadrant is considered to reduce the number of components and to better focus on the main parameters that affect the deployment behavior. Outcomes of this research will not only benefit the Caltech project but will also contribute to the design of future lightweight deployable space structures that undergo unconstrained dynamic deployment.
© 2023 by Narravula Harshavardhan Reddy, and Sergio Pellegrino. This research was funded by the Space Solar Power Project at Caltech. The authors thank Dr. Terry Gdoutos and Alan Truong for their help with CAD modeling and building the test structure; Noel Esparza-Duan, Michael O'Connell, Dr. Guanya Shi, Uba K. Ubamanayu, and George Popov for their help with motion capture experiments; and Dr. Antonio Pedivellano for advice on simulation models.
Accepted Version - 2023_Harsha-paper_SMALL.pdf