The Hubble Space Telescope (HST) was designed to maintian a pointing stability (jitter) of 0.007 arc seconds rms throughout every observing period, which can last from a few seconds to several orbits. On-orbit measurements indicate that the hardware excitation induced by the reaction wheels. gyros, high gain antennae, science instrument mechanisms and tape recorders are well within specifications. Unexpectedly, the solar arrays because the dominant source of jitter. Every passage through an orbital terminator produces vibrations which emanate from the solar arrays due to thermal effects, which affect the relative positional stability. Broadband frequencies centered about 0.11 and 0.65 Hz were detected in the frequency content of the vehicle jitter. On-board modifications to the control law have attenuated the disturbance torques and reduced the vehicle jitter close to specification. Replacement of the solar arrays in December, 1993, should eliminate the torque distubances. Astrometric science observations are extremely susceptible to corruption from vehicle jitter. The removal of vehicle jitter from astrometric Transfer function scans of binary stars is explained in detail. A binary star separation of 16 milli-seconds of arc has been achieved, a separation resolution of 10 to 12 milli-seconds of arc appears feasible, with a binary star magnitude of 9 m(sub V). The achievement of this resolution is in part due to vehicle jitter removal. Comparison of vehicle jitter measurements from the position path of the vehicle control law, or from the guiding Fine Guidance Sensors (FGS), are shown to be equivalent to approximately 0.001 arc second.
SPACECRAFT DESIGN, TESTING AND PERFORMANCE
In: Spaceflight dynamics 1993; AAS(NASA International Symposium, 8th, Greenbelt, MD, Apr. 26-30, 1993, Parts 1 &amp; 2 . A95-85716 (ISSN 0065-3438); p. 445-459