Palski & Associates Now Offering Advanced Rendezvous Proximity Operations Course to Air Force

We recently wrapped our first Advanced Rendezvous Proximity Operations (RPO) course, a deep dive into the technical aspects of maneuvering vehicles in proximity to one another in space.

The ability to execute effective RPO allows for a wide array of mission sets, from cooperative satellite servicing to un-cooperative warfighting missions. Domain and spacecraft dynamics make these operations complex, and only a small pocket of experts have been able to successfully innovate in this field.

Our instructors are some of those experts, and strongly believe this knowledge needs to be fundamentally understood by all U.S. space operators. This enables operators to plan and execute more agile missions, as well as recognize and react to anomalies – skills crucial to maintaining space superiority.

The course began as a way to develop a cadre of space control experts who would bring new innovative systems into operations. As the curriculum matured, it became clear that this advanced training applied to the greater space operator community.

In preparation to take control of a new experimental system, the 3rd Space Experimental Squadron were the first organization to take the full 4-week course. Palski & Associates tailored the course to meet the specific needs of their new system. Some of the topics covered included the following:

  • Inertial Orbits/Maneuvers
  • Relative Motion & Waypoints
  • Satellite C2 and Simulations
  • Attitude and Propulsion
  • Power Subsystems
  • Estimation Theory
  • Kalman Filters & Tuning
  • Orbit Determination
  • RPO Sensors
  • Path Controllers
  • Communications
  • Rendezvous & RPO Mission Planning

In additional to classroom instruction, students applied knowledge with hands-on exercises and projects using a variety of interactive tools, simulators, and models built by Palski’s in-house development team. The course concluded with multiple capstone projects that tied the concepts covered into missions for the students to plan and execute.

Students attending the course came from different education and experiential backgrounds. No prerequisite knowledge was required, however a basic understanding of calculus and physics was helpful.

The course will be held every four months and is available to the government and contractors. The next session begins in June.