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Tactical Missile Guidance

and Control
Notes
Contents

1 Missile Instruments 1

1.1 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

1.2 Gyroscopes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

1.3 Types of Gyroscopes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

1.4 Mechanical Gyroscopes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2

1.4.1 Free or Position gyros . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3

1.4.2 Rate or Constrained Gyros . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5

1.5 Accelerometers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

1.6 Resolvers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

1.7 Altimeters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

1.8 Current Trends . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

1.9 Conclusion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

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Chapter 1

Missile Instruments

1.1 Introduction

While the missile is moving in space, forces and moments produce accelerations and
hence velocities and displacements, with respect to the earth or any other reference
frames. Hence the missile control system needs to measure accelerations, velocities and
displacements in space. Conventional potentiometers and tacho generators cannot do
these measurements. Gyroscopes or gyros, accelerometers are generally used as sensors in
short range and medium range missiles. Long-range missiles use GPS, INS or GPS/INS
as sensors or navigational aids.

1.2 Gyroscopes

1.3 Types of Gyroscopes

Gyroscopes can be of three types which are as follows :

(a) Mechanical

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(b) Fibre optic

(c) Piezo electric

1.4 Mechanical Gyroscopes

Mechanical gyroscopes exhibit the property of rigidity and precession. Rigidity is


its ability to maintain its spin axis in the same direction in space, in the presence of a
disturbing force or torque. A gyro is said to precess, when the reaction to a disturbing
force on any one gimbal gets reflected in the movement of the other gimbal. Mechanical
gyroscopes consist of a heavy rotor spinning at a very high speed (say greater than 24,000
rev/min). This rotor is held by its spin axis by a framework called gimbal as shown
in figure. The ’inner gimbal’ holds the rotor by its spin axis, which is perpendicular
to the motion of the rotor. The ’inner gimbal’ is held by an ’outer gimbal’ which is
perpendicular to both the spin axis and axis of the ’inner gimbal’.

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Based on the degrees of freedom, mechanical gyros can be of two types namely:-

(a) Free gyros

(b) Rate gyros

1.4.1 Free or Position gyros

Free gyros have three degrees of freedom. If one angular position transducer detects
the relative movement between the missile frame and outer gimbal, another relative
movement between the inner and outer gimbal, it is possible to measure two angular ro-
tations of the missile.If the three angular rotations have to be measured, then two such
gyros are required. Gyro ”toppling” is said to have taken place, if the orthogonolity

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between the three axes is lost. ”Distortion” in the measurement takes place when the
indicated angle is not same as the actual angle. Gyro toppling and distortion are com-
pensated by means of torque motors, which gives correct moment to the outer gimbal so
that the orthogonolity between the gyro axis and missile fore and aft axis is maintained.
Gyros can be ”blast” started, which are utilised for short total reaction missiles such as
anti-tank, air to air and short range surface to air systems. Sometimes the rotors are
started with compressed air. Missiles having flight timings more than 40 seconds have
electrically driven gyros. A drift rate of about 1 deg/min is acceptable for tactical grade
missiles. However the drift rate better than 0.01 deg/hour is required for navigational
grade gyros.

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1.4.2 Rate or Constrained Gyros

Rate gyros measure angular rate about one axis. As shown in figure, a rotor is
mounted in a gimbal, whose motion about an axis at right angles to the spin axis is
constrained by a torsion bar or friction free spring system. There are no other gimbals,
so the rotor has one degree of freedom only, about its spin axis. The cylindrical gimbal
is enclosed in a hermetically sealed outer case and the gap between them is filled with
viscous fluid in which the gimbal is floated with neutral buoyancy. The fluid provides
viscous shear damping, minimal pivot friction and protection from shock. If the missile
turns, as indicated, a gyroscopic precession will occur as indicated, which in the steady
state, will be the angle of twist proportional to the input rate. The ”E” type pick off is
an a. c. pick off, which would give signals proportional to the rate of turn. Very good
resolution and linearity can be obtained with rate gyros. The rotor can be blast started
or electrically driven.

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1.5 Accelerometers

Linear accelerometers are the most commonly used accelerometers. They can be of
three types namely:-

(a) Spring - Mass accelerometers (or) Seismic Mass accelerometers

(b) Piezo - electric accelerometers.

(c) Force - Balance accelerometers.

Spring-Mass accelerometers, most often employed in tactical missiles, consists of a mass


suspended in a case, by a low hysteresis spring and fluid damping. The displacement
of spring is proportional to the linear force and hence acceleration. The displacement
is picked off using a. c. pick offs. There is only one sensitive direction for these ac-
celerometers. Hence three accelerometers, placed orthogonally, are required to measure
the accelerations in the three mutually perpendicular axes.

Piezo-electric accelerometers, exhibit an electric charge across two faces, proportional


to the impressed force and hence acceleration. They require special charge amplifier for
low frequency acceleration.

Force-balance accelerometer is a more accurate version of spring-mass accelerometer


and is used when great accuracy is required.

1.6 Resolvers

Resolvers are used to resolve the guidance commands, issued from the ground, to the
freely rolling missile axes, so that the commands are executed properly.

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The induction resolver consists of a rotor and a stator, each with two windings whose
electrical axes are at 90 degrees to each other as shown in the figure above. The secondary
voltages, which result, are proportional to the sine and cosine of the shaft angle. The
rotor is held stationary in space by means of a ’roll gyro’ and the stator is allowed to
rotate/roll with the missile. The guidance commands (up-down or left-right) are given
to each of the primary windings of the rotor. Due to the rotation/rolling of the missile
about the roll axis, induced voltages are produced in the stator winds (secondary), which
is a function of the roll angle. The output of each winding of the stator is given to the
rudders and elevators for the left-right or up-down movement. If the guidance command
of V1 is given for the up-down movement, then the elevators servos would receive a
command proportional to V1 cosφ and the rudder servos receive −V1 sinφ ; where φ is
the angle by which the missile has rolled.

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1.7 Altimeters

Altimeters measure the height of the missile with reference to the ground/sea level or
some selected elevation. For a missile flying above 100 m from the ground, over a distance
of 20 to 30 Km, a simple barometric capsule or piezo electric pressure transducer would
be accurate. This is not suitable for heights less than 100 m, due to local variations in
atmospheric pressure, resulting in poor accuracy. FM/CW radar altimeters are more
accurate in the range of 0 − 10 m. Pulsed radar techniques are also used in finding
heights.

Another accurate altimeter is laser altimeter. This device illuminates the target
(ground) with a short duration package of radiation derived from a laser source. Radi-
ation reflected or scattered from the target (ground) is detected by a receiver in close
proximity to the laser source. Conventional radar timing techniques are used to give
the altitude information. Since the laser altimeters have narrow beam widths (of the
order of a degree or so), can give spot measurements of altitude above the terrain. The
accuracy is 0.1 for a range up to 10 m and 1 percentage from 10m to 50m.

1.8 Current Trends

1.9 Conclusion