Legacy recovery and robust augmentation structured design for the VEGA launcher

Diego Navarro-Tapia*, Andres Marcos, Pedro Simplicio, Samir Bennani, Christophe Roux

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
139 Downloads (Pure)


This paper presents a systematic robust control framework based on the structured H approach to address the synthesis of the atmospheric ascent-flight control system of a launch vehicle. To introduce this synthesis framework, the control problem is first formulated to recover the classically designed baseline rigid-body controller of the actual VEGA launcher VV05 mission. This legacy recovery builds the necessary background for a good understanding of the problem and increases confidence for its transfer to the Space industry. Subsequently, it is shown how to systematically augment the robustness of the design from the synthesis stage against wind turbulence perturbations and parametric uncertainty. The resulting controller is verified via classical stability margins and robust structured singular value analyses and finally validated using nonlinear, time-domain simulations in a Monte Carlo campaign. It is highlighted that this robust synthesis framework allows to obtain a controller with improved robust stability and global performance, and more importantly, it provides a more systematic methodology for design.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3363-3388
Number of pages26
JournalInternational Journal of Robust and Nonlinear Control
Issue number11
Early online date16 Apr 2019
Publication statusPublished - 25 Jul 2019


  • robust control synthesis
  • structured
  • VEGA launcher
  • μ analysis


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