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Differential-game-based guidance law using target orientation observations

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2 Author(s)
Y. Oshman ; Dept. of Aerosp. Eng., Technion-Israel Inst. of Technol., Haifa, Israel ; D. A. Rad

Modern 4th generation air-to-air missiles are quite capable of dealing with today's battlefield needs. Advanced aerodynamics, highly efficient warheads and smart target acquisition systems combine to yield higher missile lethality than ever. However, in order to intercept highly maneuverable targets, such as future unmanned combat air vehicles (UCAV), or to achieve higher tracking precision for missiles equipped with smaller warheads, further improvement in the missile guidance system is still needed. A new concept is presented here for deriving improved differential-game-based guidance laws that make use of information about the target orientation, which is acquired via an imaging seeker. The underlying idea is that of using measurements of the target attitude as a leading indicator of target acceleration. Knowledge of target attitude reduces the reachable set of target acceleration, facilitating the computation of an improved estimate of the zero-effort miss (ZEM) distance. In consequence, missile guidance accuracy is significantly improved. The new concept is applied in a horizontal interception scenario, where it is assumed that the target maneuver direction, constituting a partial attitude information, can be extracted via processing target images, acquired by an imaging sensor. The derivation results in a new guidance law that explicitly exploits the direction of the target acceleration. The performance of the new guidance law is studied via a computer simulation, which demonstrates its superiority over existing state-of-the-art differential-game-based guidance laws. It is demonstrated that a significant decrease in the miss distance can be expected via the use of partial target orientation information.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Aerospace and Electronic Systems  (Volume:42 ,  Issue: 1 )