PhD Defense by Peter Schulte

Event Details
  • Date/Time:
    • Tuesday June 5, 2018 - Wednesday June 6, 2018
      1:00 pm - 2:59 pm
  • Location: Montgomery Knight Building, Room 317
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Summary Sentence: A State Machine Architecture for Aerospace Vehicle Fault Protection

Full Summary: No summary paragraph submitted.

Peter Zane Schulte
Advisor: Prof. David A. Spencer

will defend a Doctoral dissertation entitled,

A State Machine Architecture for Aerospace Vehicle Fault Protection


Tuesday, June 5, 2018 at 1:00 p.m.
Montgomery Knight Building, Room 317

Because of their complexity and the unforgiving environment in which they operate, aerospace vehicles are vulnerable to mission-critical failures. In order to prevent these failures, aerospace vehicles often employ Fault Detection, Isolation, and Recovery (FDIR) systems to sense, identify the source of, and recover from faults. Typically, aerospace systems use a rule-based paradigm for FDIR where telemetry values are monitored against specific logical statements such as static upper and lower limits. The model-based paradigm allows more complex decision logic to be used for FDIR. State machines are a particular tool for model-based FDIR that have been explored by industry but not yet widely adopted. This study develops a generic and modular state machine FDIR architecture that is portable to flight software. The study will focus on FDIR for the Guidance, Navigation, & Control subsystem, but it will be presented in a manner that is applicable to all vehicle subsystems. The state machine formulation is applied for on-board model-based fault diagnosis. Two specific case studies are employed to demonstrate the architecture. The first is a terrestrial application of unmanned aerial vehicles for 3D scanning and mapping, which is validated through flight testing. The second is a space-based application of automated close approach and capture for a Mars sample return mission, which is validated through software-in-the-loop testing with flight-like software components.


  • Prof. David A. Spencer – School of Aerospace Engineering (advisor)
  • Prof. E. Glenn Lightsey – School of Aerospace Engineering
  • Prof. Mark Costello – School of Aerospace Engineering
  • Dr. Neil Smith – Visual Computing Center, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology
  • Mr. Paul Rosendall – Space Department, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

Additional Information

In Campus Calendar

Graduate Studies

Invited Audience
Public, Graduate students, Undergraduate students
Phd Defense
  • Created By: Tatianna Richardson
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: May 16, 2018 - 10:13am
  • Last Updated: May 16, 2018 - 10:13am