Minimum energy guidance for aerodynamically controlled missiles

Robert Wes Morgan, Hal Tharp, Thomas L. Vincent

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


This paper examines the problem of guiding a missile to a target using minimal energy. First, an optimal controller is developed for a missile that has arbitrary control over its acceleration vector. Next, an optimal controller is sought for a missile that has a directional control constraint, which is intended to model the actual constraint present in aerodynamically controlled missiles. The optimal guidance law is shown to have a very convenient form that is directly related to the optimal guidance law without the control constraint. Simulation results are conducted to completely characterize the new guidance law.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2026-2037
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Automatic Control
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2011


  • Aerodynamic control
  • HJB equation computation
  • Latax (constrained) control
  • Minimum energy
  • Optimal guidance law
  • Zero-effort miss

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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