Three-minute thesis: It’s not coffee science


Hans Phipp Sueltrop, University of Canterbury

PhD title

Development of real-time disturbance models for rocket control in subsonic and supersonic flight


“The aim of this research is to develop real-time capable disturbance models for subsonic and supersonic rockets. Disturbances induced by the rocket itself or by external environmental influences, lead to unwanted errors in the planned flight trajectory and can cause structural failures or dangerous flight conditions. A focus will be on fuel sloshing in the rocket tanks which creates a flight instability. The developed disturbance models will be based on minimal modelling techniques and integral-based parameter identification methods. Flight controllers will use the models to minimize the effects of disturbances and provide the foundation for application to the orbital rocket programme of the industry partner Rocket Lab.”

The finals of the 2017 Asia-Pacific Three-Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, which challenges PhD students to communicate their research in a snappy three-minute presentation, were held on the 29 September at the University of Queensland, St Lucia Campus. Competitors came from 55 Universities from across Australia, New Zealand and North and South-East Asia. 

The presentations were judged by distinguished figures in Australian science including Cosmos editor-in-chief Elizabeth Finkel.

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