Abstract for: A Soft Landing Model and a Mass-Spring Damper Based Control Heuristic

This paper presents a soft landing model and a related control heuristic. The aim of this modeling effort is to represent the process of landing a spacecraft on the surface of a celestial body. This problem is known as the soft landing problem because crashing the spacecraft to the surface should be avoided. At the same time, long landing period necessitates extensive use of fuel, which should also be avoided. Consequently, the main goal in soft landing problem is to land the spacecraft as gently and as fast as possible. We adapted a control heuristic from the mass-spring damper model. According to the initial simulation runs, the adapted heuristic is successful in landing the spacecraft.