Strapdown and Integrated Navigation Systems

Course Length:





In this highly structured 4-day short course – specifically tailored to the needs of busy engineers, scientists, managers, and aerospace professionals – Thomas S. Logsdon will provide you with new insights into the modern guidance, navigation, and control techniques now being perfected at key research centers around the globe.

The various topics are illustrated with powerful analogies, full-color sketches, block diagrams, simple one-page derivations highlighting their salient features, and numerical examples that employ inputs from today’s battlefield rockets, orbiting satellites, and deep-space missions. These lessons are carefully laid out to help you design and implement practical performance-optimal missions and test procedures.

What you will learn:

  • What are the key differences between gimballing and strapdown Intertial Navigation Systems?
  • How are transfer alignment operations being carried out on modern battlefields?
  • How sensitive are today’s solid state accelerometers and how are they currently being designed?
  • What is a covariance matrix and how can it be used in evaluating the performance capabilities of Integrated GPS/INS Navigation Systems?
  • How do the Paveway IV smart bombs differ from their predecessors?
  • How are MEMS devices manufactured adn what practical functions do they perform?
  • What is the deep space network and how does it handle its demanding missions?

Course Outline:

  1. Inertial Navigation SystemsFundamental Concepts. Schuller pendulum errors. Strapdown implementations. Ring laser gyros. The Sagnac effect. Monolithic ring laser gyros. Fiber optic gyros. Advanced strapdown implementations.
  2. Radionavigation’s Precise Position-Fixing Techniques. Active and passive radionavigation systems. Pseudoranging solutions. Nanosecond timing accuracies. The quantum-mechanical principles of cesium and rubidium atomic clocks. Solving for the user’s position.
  3. Integrated Navigation Systems. Intertial navigation. Gimballing and strapdown navigation. Open-loop and closed-loop implementations. Transfer alignment techniques. Kalman filters and their state variable selections. Test results.
  4. Hardware Units for Inertial Navigation. Solid-state accelerometers. Initializing today’s strapdown inertial navigation systems. Coordinate rotations and direction cosine matrices. MEMS devices. The beautiful marriage between MEMS technology and the GPS. Spaceborne inertial navigation systems.
  5. Military Applications of Integrated Navigation. Translator implementations at military test ranges. Military performance specifications. Military test results. Tactical applications. The Trident Accuracy Improvement Program. Tomahawk cruise missiles.
  6. Navigation Solutions and Kalman Filtering Techniques. Ultra precise navigation solutions. Solving for the user’s velocity. Evaluating the geometrical dilution of precision. Kalman filtering techniques. The covariance matrices and their physical interpretations. Typical state variable selections. Monte Carlo simulations.
  7. Smart bombs, Guided Missiles, and Artillery Projectiles. Beam-riders and their destructive potential. Smart bombs and their demonstrated accuracies. Smart and rugged artillery projectiles. The Paveway IV smart bombs.
  8. Spaceborne Applications of Integrated Navigation Systems. On-orbit position-fixing on early satellites. The Twin Grace satellites. Guiding tomorrow’s booster rockets. Attitude determinations for the International Space Station. Cesium fountain clocks in space. Relativistic corrections for radionavigation satellites.
  9. Today’s Guidance and Control for Deep Space Missions. Putting ICBM’s through their paces. Guiding tomorrow’s highly demanding missions from the Earth to Mars. JPL’s awesome new interplanetary pinball machines. JPL’s deep space network. Autonomous robots swarming along the space frontier. Driving along tomorrow’s unpaved freeways in the sky.


REGISTRATION:  There is no obligation or payment required to enter the Registration for an actively scheduled course.   We understand that you may need approvals but please register as early as possible or contact us so we know of your interest in this course offering.

SCHEDULING:  If this course is not on the current schedule of open enrollment courses and you are interested in attending this or another course as an open enrollment, please contact us at (410)956-8805 or Please indicate the course name, number of students who wish to participate. and a preferred time frame. ATI typically schedules open enrollment courses with a 3-5 month lead-time.   To express your interest in an open enrollment course not on our current schedule, please email us at

For on-site pricing, you can use the request an on-site quote form, call us at (410)956-8805, or email us at


  • Thomas S. Logsdon, has accumulated more than 30 years experience with the Naval Ordinance Laboratory, McDonnell Douglas, Lockheed Martin, Boeing Aerospace, and Rockwell International. His research projects and consulting assignments have included the Tartar and Talos shipboard missiles, Project Skylab, and various deep space interplanetary probes and missions. Mr. Logsdon has also worked extensively on the Navstar GPS, including military applications, constellation design and coverage studies. He has taught and lectured in 31 different countries on six continents and he has written and published 1.7 million words, including 29 technical books. His textbooks include Striking It Rich in Space, Understanding the Navstar, Mobile Communication Satellites, and Orbital Mechanics: Theory and Applications.

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