In just one week, TYBRIN recreated the functionality of their legacy risk analysis and modeling tools with MATLAB, Simulink, the Mapping Toolbox, and the Aerospace Blockset after attending MathWorks training.
“With our new tools, we completed a proof of concept that proved its capabilities,” explains Owens. “We rebid our project with our new tools and won.”
TYBRIN used the tools to model and analyze the failure modes of upper-atmospheric, unguided research rockets for NASA. Engineers used the Aerospace Blockset to create three-degrees-of-freedom and six-degrees-of-freedom missile models to handle core transformations for simulating a missile launch.
“Before, we used a general transformation program that was written in C, using output from a Fortran model with Perl scripts,” explains Owens. “With the Aerospace Blockset, I started with the ground and modeled the entire flight up to the point of impact. We simply could not do that before with our legacy tools.”
Using the Aerospace Blockset, TYBRIN altered launch elevations and adjusted the motor placement on the back end of the missile to determine where it would travel. Using Simulink, they ran 2,000 Monte Carlo simulations to capture all of the potential destructive actions, including missile detonations and early terminations. They then propagated the debris to the ground using three-degrees-of-freedom models, recording the impact points.
TYBRIN then analyzed the debris catalog with MATLAB and the Mapping Toolbox, determining the probability of impact by constructing a data grid and accumulating results for each grid cell. Using the spatial grid manipulation capabilities in the Mapping Toolbox, they converted latitude and longitude points, computed distance, analyzed data, and produced risk contours.
“The Mapping Toolbox made it easier for our customer to quickly determine the high-risk areas by simply looking at the colors,” says Owens. “The spatial grid display and analysis functions also gave us the flexibility to present our data in many ways and handle the complex distance computations.”
Owens plans to use the geostruct data type in the Mapping Toolbox to organize data for improved visualization.
By providing faster analysis and quicker response to ad-hoc requests, TYBRIN enabled NASA to meet their launch date to test a missile at the U.S. Army Kwajalein Atoll’s Ronald Reagan Ballistic Missile Test Site in the Pacific Ocean.