Dynamic analysis, numerical simulation, and experimental results of the deployment of a self-locking lightweight satellite boom are presented. The joints that connect the two segments of the boom are made of flexible semi-cylindrical shells. During the deployment, the shells undergo large deflections and large rotations, up to π radians. The boom is to be launched in the folded configuration and then deployed from a rotating satellite. In the straight configuration, after locking the joints, the boom should be stiff enough to precisely position a heavy sensor in a required location. Several models of the boom are considered for analysis. In order to optimize the sensor trajectory and the locking sequence, a model that includes stiffness of the joints but neglects flexibility of the links is developed. The joints, which are prone to instabilities and snap-through behavior, are analyzed using large deflection quasistatic approach. Finally, nonlinear dynamics FEA is performed to simulate the deployment of the complete boom. The simulation is compared with experimental results obtained from the preliminary tests.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.