In 11th International Workshop on Planning and Scheduling for Space (IWPSS 2019), pages 176-184, Berkeley, CA, July, 2019. Paper abstract bibtex
This paper presents a representation of the polygonal footprint of an Earth-observing 2D framing sensor (i.e. instruments on Rosetta, Planet Labs SkySat) for observation coverage planning that preserves curvature of the footprint edge at little additional memory cost compared to previously published techniques. Binary operations on field-of-view, ellipsoid intersection edges are introduced, allowing them to serve as edges in a polygon. A computational experiment examines the error produced by using this method versus existing methods of camera footprint representation. Edge approximation error is most significant when the field of view footprint is large compared to the body being observed (small body exploration, fly-bys, or other distant observer scenarios), and negligible when it is small (low altitude Earth observers with narrow fields of view). Great Circles polygons are degenerate elliptic edge polygons, admitting them to the polygon and edge operations in this paper.