ESA GNC Conference Papers Repository
Mini-DSS: High Precision Sun Angle Measurement without Punching Holes in your Budgets
High precision sun angle measurement has long been associated with costly, bulky and comparatively power hungry solutions. With the advent of TNOs mini-DSS this is no longer necessary. What started out as the development of a fully autonomous wireless digital sunsensor a number of years ago, has lead to a sunsensor on chip ASIC development called the APS+. This CMOS device includes a 2-d array image sensor and processing electronics on the same chip. In the current approach, the device will neither be autonomous nor wireless. The design uses a conventional low drop out linear regulator to supply the mini-DSS from a pre-regulated (secondary) DC power source and an RS422 data link. The housing for the mini-DSS though will allow the implementation of several I/O options (including PnP interface). A prototype sensor has been built and was exposed to a performance test in a laboratory sun simulator set-up, demonstrating accuracy in the range of a few arc minutes and a resolution of less than one arc minute in the whole of its 100° x 100° FOV.