JPL has developed the Formation Algorithm and Control Testbed (FACT) and the StarLight Control & Analysis Simulation Testbed (CAST) which demonstrated the Leader/ Follower formation control architecture and a hybrid formation guidance architecture.
The FACT also demonstrated formation rotation guidance for
synthetic aperture imaging. The CAST additionally demonstrated
collision avoidance during reconfiguration and formation actuator
synchronization during interferometric science observations.
The FACT and CAST are based in Matlab and C environments,
respectively. Both simulation testbeds address small, deep
The Formation Initialization Testbed was developed specifically
to demonstrate the scaleable, guaranteed formation initialization
algorithm developed by the DST Formation Control Task. This
initialization algorithm is applicable to arbitrarily-sized
deep space formations. The testbed resides in a Matlab environment.
Finally, the Formation Algorithms and Simulation Testbed
(FAST) has demonstrated for the first time two-spacecraft
precision formation flying in a distributed, real time simulation
environment. The FAST has begun to address such distributed
spacecraft issues as communication latency, limited computational
power, and compartmentalized information (each spacecraft
has its own flight processor and simulation processor: information
can only be exchanged via flight-like interfaces). The FAST
is co-developed with the Code S Terrestrial Planet Finder